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OH BOY. 20 mpg on gasoline. I guess we were on the right track, but even we didn't see this coming:

mattjs33 said:
mattjs33 said:
Correct; GM came up with the 230mpg figure based on the way that the testing was done previously to the Volt. The EPA quickly figured out that mileage would vary significantly with driving patterns and thus came up with the split figures that the Volt carries. My guess is that Fisker's original quotes of 70/80/100 were based on the same kind of thinking that led to GM's 230 figure.

The Volt's EPA gas mpg figures are 35/40, 37 combined. This was still viewed by some as a disappointment. Never mind that in terms of gallons of gasoline used per total miles driven (which howling EV purists conveniently forget is the whole purpose of a car like the Karma), some Volt owners are reporting figures in the 200-300 mpg range.

No, what were talking about is the gasoline mpg figure that will be staring everyone in the face from the Karma's official sticker. And I will just bet you that they are WAY below the ones the Volt achieved, because of the reasons I stated in my previous post.

I can't wait to see what happens next.
Fabulist said:
Fisker's claim on the gasoline mileage has always been 250 Miles on a 10-Gallon tank or 25 MPG, which is not exactly spectacular. It would be shocking if it comes in significantly less than that, but with Fisker, you never know.

Me too. They are rubbish at communicating with their customers but they are definitely good at building tension. Just to make things even more confusing, check out the "EPA EST:' figure in the screen shot I posted above :D

-- Fab.
Fabulist said:
Fisker's claim on the gasoline mileage has always been 250 Miles on a 10-Gallon tank or 25 MPG, which is not exactly spectacular.
I had not seen this, but this is about what I'm guessing. ;)
For comparison sake:

Chevrolet Volt: 37 MPG on gasoline, 94 MPGe on electric, electric range 35 miles.

Fisker Karma: 20 MPG on gasoline, 52 MPGe on electric, electric range 32 miles.

Guess that sexy body is still gonna cost ya.
 

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Hah! I like how their press release even says "... supercar performance". Yeah, right. Maybe a supercar from the 1980's. God these guys are a bunch of liars or idiots - not sure which yet. Nothing they ever say turns out to be true. I'm *seriously* thinking about canceling my order and cutting my losses right now.

-Brian
 

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32 miles range in electric mode?!? @#$%

I have a daily commute of 2 x 45 miles (which was do-able with a range of 50 miles). But if 2 x 13 of those miles have to be done with a gasoline engine running at 20 mpg, that defies a great deal of the reason why I ordered this car (and I will not be driving it privately).

What happened?? How on earth can there be such a huge difference between the tests at the EPA and at Fisker? Is the EPA doing them at 100 mph? Or fisker at 55 mph? Why does Fisker still claim 'up to 50 miles range' (whatever that means)? Are they saying the EPA-test was wrong?

Shell shock...
 

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Yeah, I think Shell Shock is the best way to describe it, Dutch. I sent an email to David Harris (who we haven't heard from in a month here) and told him that nobody trusts Fisker anymore, and their poor attempt at a spin on this wasn't fooling anyone. I suggested that Fisker *immediately* get an independent test done to try and prove if any of their claims are true. Right now I trust the EPA over Fisker hands down. Fisker has mislead us about everything so far, so we have no reason to just trust that the car really will get 50 miles on a charge *in any conditions*.

I ordered this car because I wanted an eco-friendly ride that didn't suck. But this car isn't seeming so eco-friendly right now since my Aston gets the same MPG on gas. Plus, the crappy tires that wear out in a year, and the 0-60 has been downgraded to 6.3 seconds. It just gets worse and worse every day that this drags on... sooo... disappointed.

-Brian
 

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Dutch and Brian,

Re-posting here since we seem to have moved the discussion...

There is nothing really new here. I can't believe that you are so worked up over these numbers. The EPA numbers are based on a set of variables that you may likely never experience. Yes, it is not as efficient as the Volt, but OF COURSE, its a bigger car. Physics still apply.

Here are the facts:
(1) If you plug it in every day and drive less than 40 miles (maybe 32), your "gas mileage" is INFINITE. Range is your key measurement, and yes, I'd rather not see the 32 range by the EPA but I believe it will prove conservative, and...

(2) If you believe the EPA, if you plug it in and then run through the battery charge and the entire tank of gas, you get the equivalent of 52 mpg (that's better than a Prius). If you believe Fisker, it'll be better than that on average.

(3) If you sometimes plug it in, but not every night...but you do so a couple of times for each few hundred miles (a tank of gas), you will get somewhere between the Infinite number and the 52 MPGe. Maybe 100-200 MPGe. That's GOOD, right?

(4) If you NEVER plug it in, you are worried about getting 20 mpg??? First off, my guess is that the EPA number is overly harsh, but moreover: why on earth would you buy an electric car and never plug it in? It's a stupid measurement.

So, if you plan on buying an EV and never plugging it in.... um, yeah, the GAS mileage will suck. Its designed to work on electricity. The gas is just for range extension.
 

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Dave, I edited my post while you were writing yours. I have a daily commute of 2 x 45 miles, with a charge at the office in between. So for me 32 miles of range would be problematic, since the range-extender has such a lousy mileage.

I agree with you that for people with shorter rides, it is much less problematic, if at all.

It would be nice to have some more 'independent' testing, although I do consider the EPA to be quite independent. I wonder if the European tests will have a different outcome. I hope they do, also because they can have financial consequences. In my country cars are exempt from a huge car-tax when CO2-output is under 95 grams per kilometer. If the Karma were to go over that boundary, it would become unaffordable.
 

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mattjs33 said:
For comparison sake:

Chevrolet Volt: 37 MPG on gasoline, 94 MPGe on electric, electric range 35 miles.

Fisker Karma: 20 MPG on gasoline, 52 MPGe on electric, electric range 32 miles.

Guess that sexy body is still gonna cost ya.
Maybe the closest comparison:

The Lexus LS600hL hybrid weighs 5000 lbs. and has an EPA rating of 19/23 mpg, which includes the use of the electric motor. It goes 0-60 in 5.5 seconds.

The Fisker weighs 5600 lbs. (or 5300, depends on who you believe) and has an EPA rating of 20 Mpg gasoline only and goes 0-60 in 5.9 seconds (or 6.3, depends on who you believe).

It's not marketing, its physics.

Dennis
 

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I'll just add this about EPA testing... I watch Motorweek every week and they always show what their mileage is compared with the sticker numbers. Almost all of the time the numbers they get are in the same ballpark as what the EPA reported. Usually +/- 3 MPG. But in the case of the Karma we're talking about 6x that kind of difference - not the same ballpark or even the same zip code.

-Brian
 

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brian said:
I'll just add this about EPA testing... I watch Motorweek every week and they always show what their mileage is compared with the sticker numbers. Almost all of the time the numbers they get are in the same ballpark as what the EPA reported. Usually +/- 3 MPG. But in the case of the Karma we're talking about 6x that kind of difference - not the same ballpark or even the same zip code.
Brian, the EPA has the MPG testing pretty well down after 30+ years of doing it, but the battery range test is pretty new and still evolving. The Volt's EPA range is 35 Miles, but if you look at the comments from actual owners on Edmunds (LINK), pretty much all of them say they are getting between 42 and 48 miles of EV range. This matches up with what car magazine writers who took volts in extended tests found. Here's the summary:



I realize that the Fisker is not exactly the same as the Volt, but the point is that the EPA numbers for EV range appear to be on the low side when compared to the real world experience of the car.

-- Fab.
 

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dennis said:
mattjs33 said:
For comparison sake:

Chevrolet Volt: 37 MPG on gasoline, 94 MPGe on electric, electric range 35 miles.

Fisker Karma: 20 MPG on gasoline, 52 MPGe on electric, electric range 32 miles.

Guess that sexy body is still gonna cost ya.
Maybe the closest comparison:

The Lexus LS600hL hybrid weighs 5000 lbs. and has an EPA rating of 19/23 mpg, which includes the use of the electric motor. It goes 0-60 in 5.5 seconds.

The Fisker weighs 5600 lbs. (or 5300, depends on who you believe) and has an EPA rating of 20 Mpg gasoline only and goes 0-60 in 5.9 seconds (or 6.3, depends on who you believe).

It's not marketing, its physics.

Dennis
I guess my question is whether the Karma achieves those 0-60 figures at all. 5.9 sec is out of the discusion since it was downgraded by Fisker to 6.3 sec. It is the same figure the Audi A4 carries, and the A4 feels significantly faster. I'll believe the Fisker 6.3 sec when someone independently confirms it....
 

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Dave_Car_Guy said:
Dutch and Brian,

Re-posting here since we seem to have moved the discussion...

There is nothing really new here. I can't believe that you are so worked up over these numbers. The EPA numbers are based on a set of variables that you may likely never experience. Yes, it is not as efficient as the Volt, but OF COURSE, its a bigger car. Physics still apply.

Here are the facts:
(1) If you plug it in every day and drive less than 40 miles (maybe 32), your "gas mileage" is INFINITE. Range is your key measurement, and yes, I'd rather not see the 32 range by the EPA but I believe it will prove conservative, and...

(2) If you believe the EPA, if you plug it in and then run through the battery charge and the entire tank of gas, you get the equivalent of 52 mpg (that's better than a Prius). If you believe Fisker, it'll be better than that on average.

(3) If you sometimes plug it in, but not every night...but you do so a couple of times for each few hundred miles (a tank of gas), you will get somewhere between the Infinite number and the 52 MPGe. Maybe 100-200 MPGe. That's GOOD, right?

(4) If you NEVER plug it in, you are worried about getting 20 mpg??? First off, my guess is that the EPA number is overly harsh, but moreover: why on earth would you buy an electric car and never plug it in? It's a stupid measurement.

So, if you plan on buying an EV and never plugging it in.... um, yeah, the GAS mileage will suck. Its designed to work on electricity. The gas is just for range extension.
These are really valid points to consider when buying a car like the Karma / Volt. Well said, Dave. Like I've said, some Volt owners are getting several hundred miles per gallon, as a whole over the car's usage. For a guy with my driving patterns, I think I would only use gasoline once a week.

However, I suspected the gasoline MPG would be dismal, and I also suspected the electric MPGe would be significantly less than the Volt's, and I was right on both counts. The Karma simply weighs too much.

Can we give some credit to GM for the job they did with the Volt? Turns out these kind of cars are more difficult to engineer than most of us thought, Henrik included, possibly...

Dutch said:
It would be nice to have some more 'independent' testing, although I do consider the EPA to be quite independent.
To be clear, the EPA itself tests a very low percentage of cars on their own. The rest are done for the manufacturers by third parties, in accordance with EPA procedures. The manufacturers submit their results to the EPA for review. If the EPA agrees that the processes used to obtain the numbers are valid, they pretty much take the manufacturers for their word.

However, as Fabulist pointed out with his Volt chart, EPA testing has been pretty conservative regarding electric range. Remember that the Leaf is only rated for 73 miles, yet 100 or so is possible for most on a pretty regular basis. Provided you drive like a pansy. So I guess that leaves me out! ;)
 

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The EPA "EV" range is clearly on the low side (since it's lower than most people get out of their Volt and Leaf models). Still, if the correction is linear, the EPA range of 32 electric miles corresponds to a "real world" range of something like 42 or 43 electric miles. That's significantly lower than the promised 50. Being generous and using 43 I get 86% of promised EV range.

It's quite sufficient for me (30 miles alone will take care of roughly 80% of my daily usage, and 40 gets me over 90%) but I have to call that a miss.

I find the rated 20 mpg on gasoline/petrol also disappointing but not really surprising, given the weight of the vehicle. If the tank really is just 9.5 (US) gallons, though, this gives a total range of only about 232 miles: 42 EV-miles plus 190 petrol-miles. That's not awful in terms of absolute mpg, given that other 400 horsepower vehicles tend to get no more than 16 mpg (EPA rating again—real world mileage is another matter entirely), but the small fuel tank makes this a bit annoying for the occasional long trip. (On the other hand, it's normal to have to stop at least once on my occasional 240 or 360 mile trips to the south or north. Even if my car does not need a food/fuel stop, I do. :) )

Again, if these numbers hold up in "real world" usage of the car, I will have to call this a miss as well.

I'm still waiting to see what people really get, since the EPA's estimation methodology for EVs appears to be pretty badly broken.
 

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Those who don't trust the EPA are free to do so, however, in my experience their projections are +/- 10% of reality, so I do trust them... a heck of a lot more than I trust Fisker. I can't say anything about the Volt and Leaf numbers since I have no experience there, but to suggest that just because some people are getting better than the EPA doesn't mean the Karma will be the same.

Also, everyone seems to be under the assumption that the EPA is testing electric cars differently than Gas cars. Not true. It's not like they suddenly took the car down a gravel road as soon as they switched from Sport to Stealth mode. They drive the cars the same regardless of what's under the hood, and if they're within 10% of reality on most gas cars, then there's no reason to suspect it would be any different for EV's.

It seems some of you don't care that the car is the worst EV out there according to the EPA. You're perfectly happy with a 32 mile range because that's all you drive. Well, for me that isn't good enough. I can barely get across town here with that kind of range. Even the original 50 mile range was cutting it close for me, but since the car supposedly was going to get 26mpg after the battery ran out I was okay with it. Now I'm not.

None of you should believe anything Fisker says at this point. You're in a reality distortion field if you do. So, I put it to Fisker to PROVE THEIR CLAIMS. The EPA has done their tests, and Fisker is choosing to brush it off. Well, fine, Fisker. If you really think your car gets 50 miles on a charge then PROVE IT! Get an unbiased member of the media to drive the car for a day and see what he actually gets. Heck, I'll even let you cheat by finding a horse jockey to drive it and remove the gas from the tank so there's no extra weight Then drive it on the highway at 55mph. That should give you optimal range. Let's see what it gets. If it gets 50 then I'll shut up. Otherwise, I want my deposit back. I'm tired of the bait and switch.

-Brian
 

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If you have anybody in the back seats, you're going to need to stop every couple hundred miles anyway so they can stretch their legs. Might as well do it at a gas station and fill up at the same time.

With a couple of people in the car, it's hitting on 6,000 lbs, so I'm not surprised by the numbers.

Keep in mind, the specs on the original DeLorean in the US were horrible! 150hp and 0-60 at around 10 secs! But, that car to this day turns head in whiplash fashion. I think the Karma is the same way. When you're driving a Karma, nobody cares if it's not totally green, but you're going to get stares and amazement for years to come! No other car looks like that!
 

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I'm glad I purchased my Karma based on the looks and the fact that is is perfect for me with 2 kids and 1 wife. We all fit! Everything else on the market with that look can't fit us all (Grandturismo can, but it's only a 2 door). The fact that I can do my commute on electric is a plus (32 miles RT), and my combined gas milage will improve significantly over my Lamborghini (ave. 14mpg). And hey, I'm not going to sweat if I have to buy 3 more or less gallons of gas a week. It's just new and exciting to have something different in my garage than all my exclusively gas burning cars.
Sigurd[hr]
 

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Having been through 3 startups, I'm not surprised that the first product from Fisker falls short of the original claims in a number of areas. To start a new company and believe it is going to be successful, especially in the car industry, you have to be a supreme egotist/optimist/promoter, and its clear Henrik qualifies in all 3 categories. The real test will be whether the car as delivered satisfies enough customers so that Fisker can attract the additional financing it will inevitably need to survive and grow large enough to become a successful standalone company.

My charger arrived this week, my car is scheduled to begin production tomorrow, and I'm still excited to be an early Fisker customer. Can't wait to be driving it in December.

Dennis
 

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dennis said:
My charger arrived this week, my car is scheduled to begin production tomorrow, and I'm still excited to be an early Fisker customer. Can't wait to be driving it in December.
I live 33 miles away from my office and my company has generously provided me with a 110V plug that I can use to charge the car while I am at work. So even with the lower EPA numbers I should be able to commute gas-free pretty much every day (assuming I can coast the last mile into the office). I am absolutely disappointed with the EV miles estimate coming in so much below the 50 Miles number Henrik has been touting for the last four years but I am not dissuaded from buying the car on that basis alone.

-- Fab.
 

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Glad to see that most Volt-drivers (or at least the automotive journalists testing it) got much more mileage than the EPA-estimate. Hopefully they also missed the target for the Karma, I just need an extra 10 miles for my daily commute (and that's what the Volt-drivers are getting).

I'm doing almost exclusively 70-75 mph on empty highways, at a very constant speed. Hopefully that helps. Did the EPA give out seperate electric range estimates for urban, highway and combined?
 

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Dutch, is there any way you can test drive a car before you purchase, to see if it will meet your needs? Keep in mind that over time, the battery will degrade somewhat. That would really bite, to buy the car with the expectation of avoiding the pump except for long trips and (because of the small tank) still having to fill up every other week.
 
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