Oh boy, Fisker has been run through the ringer in the past year, or so, but Henrik Fisker remains optimistic that everything’s going to be all right. During the Chicago Auto Show, Mr. Fisker was heard saying that he anticipates the Karma’s production to restart “fairly soon” after its recent halt.
To recap the recent struggles: Fisker first had tons of cars destroyed by Hurricane Sandy; their insurance company denied the claim for said damaged vehicles; A123 – their battery supplier – went belly up; and the aforementioned temporary cessation of the Karma’s production. We’re not even going to get into the fire issues that marred the company’s image for a period of time.
With the approval of the sale of A123 to Wanxiang Group – a Chinese firm – one step in the restart process for the Karma is nearly complete. Fisker is still relying on an outside consultant to straighten out its business practices to save it a little cash and for an investor or strategic partner to bring in a little extra operating capital.
We are thoroughly convinced that the Karma is a quality luxury sedan, despite its earlier issues, so we are hoping that its production will restart without a hitch and that it will ultimately succeed. We’ll continue following the Karma saga and update you as more details emerge.
That is until after we remind you that, according to Lamborghini, the entire inventory of Aventador Roadsters until the middle of next year has already been sold out.
Yep. If you want one, you’re going to have to wait a really long time to get it. This news isn’t all that surprising, considering the Aventador, for one, is really awesome and for another thing, is really, really awesome.
It certainly looks like Lamborghini has another hot ticket on their hands, making them two for two with the Aventador. If you really insist on getting yours in advance, then the you must pay an enormous amount in advance or comply to paying special taxes.
Either way, it’ll most likely cost you more than the supercar’s $440,000 sticker price. But, if you have the money for it, what’s stopping you?
Joe Flacco won a whole lot more than just a Super Bowl championship after leading the Baltimore Ravens to their second title in team history. Sure, he threw for 287 yards with three touchdowns and also won himself the game’s MVP award.
You could make a case that Ravens receivers Anquan Boldin and Jacoby Jones also deserved the MVP award, but we have no problem with Flacco winning it. The man proved up to the task and showed that he belongs in the elite class of quarterbacks in the NFL.
Seeing as how somebody can apparently win a 2014 Corvette Stingray by playing football and leading his team to the Super Bowl title, then we would’ve signed up to play football a long time ago.
Ok, maybe not.
In any case, congratulations to Joe Flacco and the Baltimore Ravens for winning Super Bowl XLVII. Certainly well deserved!
Rumors of a high-performance sports coupe from Lexus could heat up after it was reported that the Japanese automaker has filed a trademark for the name "RC F" in the U.S. and Europe.
The "RC 350" name was actually trademarked back in November with the Australian Patent Office, setting off speculation that this new RC model could be car that’ll be based on the LF-CC Concept . Now that Lexus has followed that up with the trademark of "RC F," you can clearly see a pattern slowly developing akin to what the company already has with the IS and IS F models.
No confirmation has been made, but in the interest of full disclosure, Lexus’ "RC F" was filed under the United States Patent & Trademark Office #85770072 and the European Union #011314226.
We’ll be sure to update you on any new updates regarding this story. At the very least, it’s getting us really excited to see what Lexus has in store for all of us.
The 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray has become a fixture in our fantasies in the short time that it’s been alive. As it turns out, we might need to reserve a little bit of space for the convertible version of the Corvette Stingray because it’s debut is going to take place sooner than later.
Autoweek is reporting that the 2014 Corvette Stingray Convertible will make its world debut at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show . In case you didn’t know, the Geneva Motor Show opens to the press on March 5th and 6th, then to the general public from the 7th to the 17th. That puts us less than two months from the debut of the new drop-top Stingray.
In addition to news about its expected debut, sources also told Autoweek that the Corvette Stingray will be badged as a 2014 model and will find its way into dealerships near the end of the year.
It goes without saying that Infiniti isn’t exactly what you’d call a mainstream brand. It’s lost in the shadows of parent automaker, Nissan , and hasn’t really established the kind of independent presence that Nissan had hoped.
So, it was pretty telling when Nissan Executive Vice President, Andy Palmer, told Wards Auto that Carlos Ghosn – CEO of Nissan – gave him the green light to cancel the brand altogether. However, instead of sending Infiniti to pasture, Palmer decided to not only keep the brand but also champion for more autonomy from Nissan.
Palmer cited the kind of relationship Audi has with its parent company, Volkswagen . Despite being owned by a largely mainstream, middle-market automaker, Audi has crafted its own premium identity that’s separate from the VW brand. This independence has allowed Audi to "create a series of professionals that understand the premium market in a very premium way.”
Nissan eventually hired former Audi USA chief, Johan de Nysschen, as Infiniti president and lead the efforts in bringing some structure to the luxury brand. Sin ce assuming the position, de Nysschen has made it clear that one of his first edicts as president is to become a brand that’s "less about volume and more about becoming a ’proper’ luxury brand.”
Does Infiniti have to do the same thing Lexus did with Toyota to create autonomy from Nissan? Not necessarily, but in order for them to achieve that objective, they need to build their models separate from Nissan’s influence.
They’ll still share some platforms and underpinnings, like the Toyota/Lexus and VW/Audi teams, but if you’re a customer you need Infiniti to offer features — styling or mechanical — that separates itself from its parent company. Without those changes, they’ll always be treated as retouched Nissans with a different badge.
Over in Europe, however, that doesn’t appear to be the case after Chrysler announced that it has no plans to sell the Viper across the Atlantic anytime soon, citing its exclusive American concentration as its motive behind the decision.
The announcement is interesting for a number of reasons, not the least of which is Chrysler’s apparent reluctance in bringing the Viper to a continent chock-full with its own share of sports cars and supercars. Maybe they realized they would enter a saturated market, although the price of the Viper in Europe would be significantly cheaper than most of the supercars running around those roads.
Chrysler’s decision to keep the Viper in U.S. soil would be a coup for Chevrolet, who announced earlier this week that the Corvette C7 Stingray would hit UK dealerships in the near future. One less competitor is great news for Chevrolet, especially when you consider that the Viper is truly the only direct American competitor to the `Vette.
Make no mistake, the SRT Viper is every bit as fabulous and deadly as its Chevrolet counterpart. This move does raise some questions as to whether Chrysler believes the SRT Viper could fare well in Europe, or maybe just in the UK, something Chevrolet believes the Corvette C7 Stingray can do.
We may see Chrysler change its mind if the Corvette takes off in the European market.
Add McLaren to the growing list of automakers that are celebrating their anniversary this year.
The British automaker has been mum about their plans, but now that every other automaker has unfurled their respective anniversary plans, McLaren has finally announced their own anniversary plans 50 years after founder Bruce McLaren started a company that has since reinvented the supercar genre.
To celebrate this momentous occasion, McLaren will use a 50th anniversary logo on everything from their merchandise all the way to the new MP4-28 Formula 1 race car.
It’s certainly worth noting that McLaren has a lot to celebrate about, considering the trail they’ve blazed in the supercar world. Whether it’s through exotics or even the world of motorsports, the British automaker has made the kind of emphatic stamp in the industry only a few can claim to have matched.
And as Ron Dennis, McLaren’s executive chairman, eloquently puts it, "This is a book that’s still being written...and that, perhaps, is the greatest legacy of McLaren."
It’s hard for rival automakers to find a consensus on topics regarding the industry, but every now and then, you’ll find that these companies are in agreement over a certain issue. The mass exodus from Iran appears to be one of them.
Last year, a number of automakers, including Porsche , Hyundai and Toyota , all announced their pullout from the Iranian market. Now, after mounting pressure from the group United Against Nuclear Iran, Italian supercar makers Lamborghini and Maserati have pulled also out of the country.
The decision to leave Iran was a response from calls made by the UANI during a press conference last October that outed the two automakers as still in business in the country. As soon as the conference ended, Lamborghini announced its departure with Maserati following suit. Maserati ’s case, in particular, seemed to catch a lot of people by surprise, including the automaker itself, particularly because its parent company, Fiat , had already announced it was ending their business in the country a few months earlier.
It’s no coincidence why these automakers are all pulling out of the country. Rising economic tensions are at the forefront of the move, and it’s easy to understand why the massive automotive pullout was being done to support anti-nuclear efforts.
It seems like we’ve been waiting for the Alfa Romeo 4C for over a decade now. We know it really hasn’t been that long, but the wait for this car has been real a patience-tester.
It now appears that the horizon is finally upon us; the 4C Coupe and Roadster appears to be within our sights.
At least that’s what Chrysler & Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne said at the Detroit Auto Show when he declared that the 4C will go on sale in the U.S. before the end of the year. "We’re finalizing the car now, so it should be here by the end of the year," Marchionne was quoted by The Detroit News.
Yet even that latest proclamation was met with a little confusion after a statement earlier last week pretty much said that the 4C’s U.S. debut will be delayed in light of continuing talks regarding the return of the Italian automaker on U.S. soil.
At this point, it’s probably a more prudent approach to simply wait for the car to appear in dealerships. We’ve waited long enough for the 4C, anyway. What’s another year’s worth of keeping an eye out for its debut?
At the very least, we’re waiting for a pretty spicy sports car, one that comes with a 1.8-liter turbocharged engine that develops 230 horsepower with a 0-to-100 km/h (62 mph) time of less than five seconds and a top speed of 155 mph.