Pininfarina's Italian design may be good Karma for plug-in carmaker


2017 Karma Revero

2017 Karma Revero

Fisker, the luxury plug-in hybrid car company that went bankrupt in 2013, was founded by a car designer. Henrik Fisker, the brand's namesake was a designer at BMW before forming his own company. 

Now that venture, renamed Karma after is primary product, following the company's revival at the hands of Chinese investors, has hired a new design firm to bring it into the future.

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The company announced an agreement with the most famous Italian design house, Pininfarina, to design its next round of products, which could include an update to the Karma Revero (the car that began life as the Fisker Karma), as well as develop future products.

Now owned by Indian automaker Mahindra, Pininfarina has begun developing its own cars under its brand name, but the company still designs cars for other brands.

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The companies announced that the first products of the tie-up should appear in the second quarter of 2019, which could indicate it is an update of the existing Revero. Spy photographers have caught a camouflaged version of the Revero testing on U.S. roads.

The company, now owned by Chinese auto-parts supplier Wanxiang, also plans other updates to the design, including connectivity, performance, and artificial intelligence. CEO Lance Zhou said in a statement that the company plans to join other partnerships to make that happen, but wasn't specific on what might be announced or when.

Company founder Henrik Fisker has gone on to start another new automaker, Fisker Inc., that revealed its first concept car last year and has made waves with announcements about solid-state batteries.

 
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