Goodbye Fisker, hello Elux: New Chinese owner renames Karma electric car

Fisker Karma
Chinese automotive supplier Wanxiang is working to revive Fisker Automotive and its Karma extended-range electric car, and while the new owner doesn’t plan to significantly alter the styling or powertrain, it does have one big change in mind.

Fisker Automotive will be renamed Elux, according to a new report from Reuters. The relaunch of its sole product – which will be called the Elux Karma – has reportedly been pushed back to mid-2016.

Fisker is named after co-founder and automotive designer Henrik Fisker, who has since moved on from the company.

He left after a disagreement with other managers before the company’s 2012 bankruptcy, and most recently teamed with Galpin Auto Sports on the Ford Mustang-based Rocket muscle car.

Name change aside, Wanxiang will reportedly retain most of Fisker’s original design. It previously said it wanted to keep changes to a minimum, which would make re-certifying the car for sale easier.

Wanxiang acquired the remains of Fisker in a bankruptcy auction last year, and had hoped to restart Karma production this year. That may have been an overly ambitious goal.

Fisker briefly looked like a potential rival for Tesla Motors, but the Karma had numerous quality-related issues when it was in production the first time.

Production was contracted to Valmet Automotive in Finland, but Wanxiang will reportedly build the car somewhere else.

The company formerly known as Fisker purchased a former General Motors plant in Delaware, and it utilization was one of the factors in Wanxiang’s successful bid for the company.

Wanxiang will also reportedly raise the price to $135,000, about 20 percent more than the sticker price of a Karma back in 2012.

Restarting production may be difficult, but it will only get harder the longer Wanxiang waits.

As the Karma design ages, it will require more significant updates to keep pace with the competition.

Cars

Bosch, Daimler team up to deploy autonomous Mercedes-Benz S-Classes in San Jose

In 1986, when Bosch and Daimler joined an autonomous car research project, the technology seemed overly futuristic. Now, the partners are aiming to make a production self-driving car by the early 2020s.
Cars

Uber wants to restart self-driving car tests in Pennsylvania

Uber is seeking to resume testing self-driving cars on the streets of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania following a fatal crash in Arizona that shut down on-road testing for months. Uber claims to have made safety improvements.
Cars

Man in Japan drives sports car ‘faster than a bullet train’ in YouTube stunt

A motorist in Japan is in serious trouble with the law after he drove his Nissan GT-R sports car at a speed that would've seen it overtake some of the nation's famously fast bullet trains.
Cars

We found the best trucks for everyone (including truck haters)

Pickup trucks have evolved to meet the demands of a shifting marketplace. They now have to compete with cars and crossovers, as well as other trucks. Here are the best trucks currently on the market.
Cars

Honda HR-V vs. Honda CR-V: The differences explained

The Honda HR-V and CR-V may overlap in some regard, but they're not the same vehicle. In this comparison, we highlight the design, technology, performance, and fuel economy unique to each ride.
Cars

This hydrogen-powered Chevrolet Silverado looks like it’s straight out of Halo

General Motors' defense division has released video footage of a rugged, Halo-like truck called Silverado ZH2. The pickup is powered by the next evolution of GM's hydrogen fuel cell drivetrain.
Mobile

Google Maps tests feature that will help drivers avoid crashes, speed traps

Google Maps is testing a feature that lets drivers report crashes and speed traps so the app can plan efficient routes for others in the area, or warn of upcoming hazards. Waze, which Google owns, already offers such a feature.
Cars

Tesla appoints Robyn Denholm as chair, Elon Musk steps down

Tesla co-founder and CEO Elon Musk agreed to step down from his role as chairman as part of a settlement deal with the SEC. Tesla has named a 55-year-old Australian businesswoman named Robyn Denholm as his successor.
Cars

Ares turns the Tesla Model S into a two-door roadster with Italian flair

Italian coachbuilder Ares has done what Tesla won't. It's taking a Model S, chopping off the roof, and sending the rear doors back to the parts bin to create a roadster that's ready for the French Riviera.
Cars

Ford buys scooter-sharing service Spin as it looks to expand beyond cars

Ford has acquired San Francisco-based scooter-sharing company Spin. The Blue Oval believes mobility services like scooter sharing can complement its existing car business going forward.
Cars

Thinking of driving for Uber? These cars are safe, comfy, and fuel-efficient

Uber is a viable means for making money on the side, but you won't earn much if all of your profits are going direct toward fuel and maintenance. Thankfully, these five cars are a perfect fit for those looking to shuttle passengers from…
Cars

Ambitious but not rubbish: The best 'Top Gear' episodes

Since its relaunch in 2002, 'Top Gear' has become required viewing for any serious gearhead. The great moments from this show may seem too numerous to count, but we've managed to pick some of the highlights from the first 25 seasons.
Cars

Camaro vs. Mustang: Differences and similarities between two premier pony cars

The Chevrolet Camaro and the Ford Mustang are two of America's favorite sports cars. In this comparison piece, we highlight the main differences between the two machines when it comes to their design and performance, among other factors.
Cars

Roborace wants human drivers and machines to work together

Roborace believes the future of racing is autonomous, but it's keeping human drivers in the picture for now. For its first race season, Roborace will use a car called DevBot 2.0 that can be driven by humans or machines.