Fisker Automotive, the startup responsible for the plug-in Fisker Karma sports sedan, is launching an all-out quality control melee to satisfy customers following a report that Consumer Reports‘ purchased test car stopped working with just 200 miles on the odometer. The automaker announced it would be upgrading its VIP Customer Care Coverage for both existing and future customers.
Fisker is so emphatic about the quality control measures that it repeated itself in its official statement with two identically written paragraphs, one after the other, saying that it found fault with battery supplier A123 Systems’ prismatic cells and planned to fix them. To those complaining about Fiskers not being made in the U.S., the automaker noted that the batteries were manufactured in Livonia, Michigan. A123 Systems noted in its separate statement that batteries made in its Chinese facilities were not subject to the recall.
Additionally, current Fisker owners and those purchasing their cars after the announcement will have their battery warranties extended from 50 months or 50,000 miles to 60 months or 60,000 miles, whichever comes first. European customers will have their warranties extended to 60 months or 100,000 kilometers. The enhanced customer care package will also cover the automaker replacing batteries free of charge in all affected vehicles—something Consumer Reports estimated to have cost $20,000 in its Karma sedan.
Fisker enacted its upgraded VIP Customer Care initiative following the Consumer Reports blog post entry saying its car stopped working in the first 200 miles. As a result, Fisker CEO Tom LaSorda announced his company would be creating a Quality SWAT Team to battle the forces of evil and stave off technical glitches. LaSorda, a months-long CEO of Fisker and decades-long veteran in the auto industry, said in a statement, “The entire Fisker Team is committed to the complete satisfaction of our customers and their experience with our vehicles. As a new technology start-up Company, we have stepped up to many challenges in our short history as we have launched one of the most advanced electric vehicles with extended range in the world.”
Thus far, Fisker has delivered more than 630 of its $107,000 Karma sports sedans to customers around the world. Ahead of next month’s New York International Auto Show, it plans to show a smaller, U.S.-built sports sedan called the Nina that will directly compete with the yet-to-reach-customers Tesla Model S.
Sources: Fisker, A123 Systems