Fisker Automotive founder Henrik Fisker is no dummy. Before he was in the hybrid car game he was supplying the world with sleek coupes and convertibles like the Tramonto and Latigo. So when his company put out the production Karma sedan at the Detroit Auto Show, Fisker also lobbed off two doors and the roof to create the Karma S concept car.
The Karma S shares its aluminum spaceframe architecture and Q-Drive powertrain with the Fisker Karma sedan. So just like the sedan, the convertible can run up to 50 miles on using its lithium-ion battery pack to power the combined 403 hp of the two electric motors. Beyond the battery-packs range a 260 hp 2.0-liter GM Ecotec engine will generate the electricity.
The design provides for a compact folding hardtop that doesn’t interfere too much with the car’s design lines. No word yet on how much added wright comes with losing the Karma’s top, but that will become clear when/if this car makes its planned 2011 production deadline.
Press release after the jump.
By now, you probably already know about all the drama with Fisker Automotive. There was that lawsuit between Hendrik Fisker and Aston Martin, the bankruptcy of Fisker’s battery supplier, and finally the bankruptcy of Fisker Automotive. Shortly after the bankruptcy, the brand was purchased by Wanxiang Group, and the name was eventually changed to Karma – the name of the only vehicle produced by Fisker Automotive. What a lot of people don’t know, however, is that before Fisker became an actual car company and built the Karma, it was a coachbuilder. As a coachbuilder, it built two different cars, one of which was the Fisker Tramanto
The Tramonto is an interesting vehicle all the way around. It shares the architecture of the Mercedes SL55 AMG, but since it was designed by Henrik Fisker, it shares some design cues with the BMW Z8. Originally, 150 examples of the Tramanto were to be built, but in the end, Fisker only manage to hand build a total of 15 – making it one of the world’s most unknown collectables. With an AMG-sourced V-8 and transmission under the hood, the car was essentially a Mercedes that looked like a BMW.
For being so rare and unknown, it was actually a beautiful car. It seems like Henrik Fisker never exactly has the best of luck, but he sure could design a car. It’s too bad the Fisker brand was never able to take off like it could have, but Fisker has said he has plans to launch a new car company in the future. Until then, let’s take a good look back at the Tramanto – the car from Fisker that you probably haven’t heard about.