A decade ago, Fisker and Tesla were two electric-vehicle hopefuls, and it was looking like Fisker might have the better chances of success.
While history certainly didn’t play out that way, it’s an odd twist that Henrik Fisker’s new venture, Fisker Inc., has dropped a teaser for its first product—a fully electric SUV—into the afterglow of last week’s Tesla Model Y electric SUV introduction.
In an announcement of the yet-unnamed vehicle released this morning, Fisker notes that in the new model, “emotion-stirring design is combined with a technologically advanced, intuitive user experience and a target range of close to 300 miles.”
Fisker says that the model will be priced under $40,000, and it plans to launch the vehicle (and start deliveries) in the second half of 2021.
The upcoming SUV will be dramatically sculpted, according to Fisker, and have a “futuristic, elegant muscular look.” A teaser image shows a vehicle with tall, chiseled corners, complemented by a some flowing sheetmetal, distinctive hood creasing, and a patterned fascia/airdam. Headlights, as in a number of recent concept and prototype designs—the upcoming Rivian R1T and R1S, for example—are high and narrow.
Also of note is that the model appears to bear the familiar round Fisker brand logo, mostly unchanged from what appeared on the Karma (now the Revero, from Karma, a separate company.)
Inside, the SUV will offer a roomy interior and modern design aesthetic—something we can trust that Fisker will get right from the start—plus a large head-up display and “unique, intuitive user interface.” Fisker also hinted about a panoramic-style roof that opens “without compromising the rugged and safe structural integrity of an SUV.”
The SUV will be available in rear-wheel-drive or four-wheel-drive (dual motor) versions, and will come with an “enhanced” lithium-ion battery pack offering about 80 kwh. Fisker has previously expressed a preference toward the cylindrical 2170 cell format that Tesla uses in the Model 3, and for the supplier LG Chem. And expect that careful use of the word “enhanced” could correspond to the supplemental use of the solid-state battery tech Fisker has been cheerleading (and co-developing)—or ultracapacitors, perhaps.
Pushing the SUV out first is an adjustment to the cadence Fisker previously outlined. In its announcement of the vehicle, Fisker said that the low-volume $129,900 EMotion flagship sedan, which it had originally planned to launch in 2019, will arrive “as patented Fisker Solid-State Battery technology becomes ready for vehicle application and commercialization.”
Sales and service remain a massive hurdle for an upstart such as Fisker, especially if it now intends to start with a higher-volume vehicle. In 2017, Fisker announced that it would partner with The Hybrid Shop, a national network of service centers, to provide service and support for the EMotion. At that time, he said the company was formulating a direct sales plan.
Fisker Inc could not yet comment to Green Car Reports on whether all or any of this applies to the higher-volume SUV. However Henrik Fisker tweeted that it will have direct sales and franchised service.
As Tesla CEO Elon Musk reiterated last week in his Model Y introduction, setting up a completely new mass-production model to be built, even if it’s already designed and developed, is massively time-consuming.
Fisker says in a press release that it’s “currently finalizing the selection of a facility, located in the United States, to produce the all-electric SUV.” Coincidentally, so is Tesla for the Model Y.