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Rumor: Was the Karma originally Fisker's design for the Whitestar?

Discussion in 'News' started by doug, Apr 14, 2008.

  1. doug

    doug Administrator / Head Moderator

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  2. Iz

    Iz EVs are here to stay

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    The key sentence in the autobloggreen article:

    Tesla as well as posters on this site may have been taken aback by the :biggrin: grill.
     
  3. doug

    doug Administrator / Head Moderator

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    #3 doug, Apr 14, 2008
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2008
    Yes, but if true, Tesla may have created its own competitor.

    At any rate, though we have yet to see a body for the Whitestar, I trust that Tesla is further along than Fisker is as far as the drivetrain is concerned.
     
  4. doug

    doug Administrator / Head Moderator

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    #4 doug, Apr 14, 2008
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2008
  5. Cobos

    Cobos S60 owner since 2013

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    Well after that article Tesla says Fisker made a crappy design AND stole ideas and working documents for the more technical side of Whitestar. Which if true there is no wonder Tesla has been pretty cool towards the Karma all this time.

    Cobos
     
  6. stopcrazypp

    stopcrazypp Well-Known Member

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    Well, Well, Well...
    It was a little suspicious when all of the sudden Fisker came out of nowhere and announced a PHEV luxury sport sedan, with the Whitestar being the only other proposed luxury sport sedan with an electric drivetrain at the time. I did hear a little about their modified Mercedes and BMWs, but it did seem strange for them to jump into the PHEV game when they had absolutely no experience or previous interest in doing so. It all makes sense now, no wonder when the "Karma" came out, it gave out all these vibes that this is something that the Whitestar should be like; I'm sure some of you felt the same.

    The sad thing is there was a 3-6 month delay on the Whitestar because Tesla realized the Fisker design was a substandard one after comparing it to the Karma and they had to come up with a new design.

    Hope Tesla will at least get back their money from the original design contract. Seems like Elon will lead the design of the Whitestar and it will be "amateur versus the professional". I still can't believe a great designer like Henrik Fisker, who penned some of the best looking Aston Martins and also the BMW Z8, would do such a low thing.
     
  7. BBHighway

    BBHighway Member

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    Distraction?

    Lawsuits like this usually take many years and cost millions of dollars. If Tesla has been wronged, I certainly would like to see them compensated, by either getting money or preventing Fisker from selling his car.

    Still, I fear this is a distraction from the business at hand. I hate to see money and effort going into a lengthy court battle that will most likely not be resolved until long after the Whitestar and Karma have fought it out in the market place.

    What I would really like to see is the Whitestar kick the Karma right out of the market, until the Fisker company goes broke. Between Whitestar and the Volt, I can see that happening, and well before the suit is ever settled.
     
  8. Kardax

    Kardax Member

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    It'll be interesting to see Henrik Fisker's response. We haven't heard his side yet. If there's any truth to Tesla's allegations, he should have known this would happen and probably has something prepared...

    This lawsuit is more of a problem for Fisker than Tesla. It disrupts Fisker's management attention at a critical time in the company's infancy. You can basically forget any hopes of a 2010 production of the Karma.

    -Ryan
     
  9. BBHighway

    BBHighway Member

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    Agreed, if there is any merit at all to to this, I think you can say goodbye to the Karma, not just for 2010, but forever.
     
  10. DDB

    DDB Member

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    Everyone is so quick to jump on Fisker. There are two sides to every story here. Just wait and see. Also, I haven't forgotten about the treatment of the founders of Tesla, so don't think for a second that Tesla's decisions are not driven by money.

    The key to Tesla's lawsuit against Fisker are damages. Besides the payment to Fisker for the design, what actual DAMAGES has Fisker taken from Tesla? Think about that. What profits has Fisker made? I haven't read the court docs, but I'd be willing to bet they are seeking injunctive relief seeking to prevent Fisker from developing and selling the car. Possibly attorney fees--which likely won't be coming back to Tesla. This is a cluster----, and don't be so quick to judge Fisker in the wrong. And I'd be willing to bet the E-Rev idea was first with GM, and NOT Tesla or Fisker.
     
  11. DDB

    DDB Member

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    BBHW, why would you want to see Fisker go belly-up anyhow? These guys have a darn good looking car, a fancy website, and could be a serious contender with Tesla. This industry needs as many legit competitors as we can get for the consumer (opposed to the ZAPs, Mr. Papp's, and LionEVs)... In this country, competition is a good thing. It keeps Tesla from getting lazy, expensive, and greedy.
     
  12. BBHighway

    BBHighway Member

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    Well, perhaps I got a little carried away. What I really meant was that I would rather them duke it out in the marketplace than to see a long expensive court battle where only the lawyers come out ahead.

    And yes, it remains to be proven that Fisker is actually at fault, here, so I hereby apologize for getting over zealous.
     
  13. AGR

    AGR Member

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    One faction of Silicon Valley venture capital is backing one manufacturer, the other faction another manufacturer. One faction wants to upper hand on the other faction.

    Both cars are "on paper" with estimated production dates with the exception that one has been shown at a major auto show a few months ago.

    There are bruised ego's that are coming into play, and we don't know what other agendas are factors.

    Neither manuafcturer has a car in the hands of customers, neither manufacturer is in the process of building the car.

    Its a paper battle over paper cars, the sad part is that both manufacturers will lose a degree of credibility.
     
  14. doug

    doug Administrator / Head Moderator

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    #14 doug, Apr 15, 2008
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2008
    Autobloggreen has picked up the story: Breaking: Tesla sues Fisker over electric car design - AutoblogGreen


    This is interesting. A few days ago, I had just assumed to give everyone the benefit of the doubt. A while back there were rumors that Fisker was working on the Whitestar design. I figured if Tesla had rejected the design, yet Fisker had faith in it (i.e. thought it or something similar had merit), then why not try to go forward with it themselves. (Unless of course the design was purchased and owned by Tesla.) But it seemed clear to me that Fisker would not be in the electric car business, or at least showing off their own design so soon if it were not for their interaction with Tesla.

    Now this lawsuit alleges that Fisker took the contract for the sole purpose of stealing trade secrets so they could launch their own vehicle.

    I'd be interested in a clear timeline of events. I'd also like to see the design that Tesla rejected. It's unclear (at least to me) from the article if Telsa first rejected the Fisker design for being not good enough, or if they only rejected it after seeing that the Karma was a much better design (and competing in the same space).

    It is amusing, though, that Elon now claims to have done the current Whitestar design himself. Is he trying to lower expectations?
     
  15. Cobos

    Cobos S60 owner since 2013

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    The NYT article says this:

    "Tesla has scrambled to come up with a new design with some help fromLotus, the maker of the bodies for the initial Tesla Roadster. Mr. Musksaid that he was leading the effort."


    Which I read as Lotus is making design suggestions and Musk is accepting/rejecting parts of the design or complete design suggestions as they are made by Lotus. A bit like the way they described the Roadster was made. I have faith in Lotus's design knowledge. As a design I think the Zap-X is wonderful, and anything by the same designer sounds good to me :) In some ways I hope this leads to us seeing the Whitestar design earlier, as I'm impatient to see what they end up with.




    Cobos
     
  16. doug

    doug Administrator / Head Moderator

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    Yes of course. But that's not how Elon is spinning it.

     
  17. DDB

    DDB Member

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    Bingo. My thought was just that Cobos. If Fisker was brought in by Tesla to design the car, then we're looking at similarities of the BODY of the Karma vs. Whitestar. Tesla may just have to reveal the Whitestar sooner than expected, or risk getting slammed again by the public. Let's not forget that Fisker partnered with Quantum to do the mechanics.
     
  18. malcolm

    malcolm Active Member

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    #18 malcolm, Apr 15, 2008
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2008
    I never really understood why Tesla didn't go to Lotus for Whitestar designs from the start. They have a good working relationship and the Roadster looks fabulous.

    Maybe it was another "sills and headlamps" thing.

    And to be honest, ANY car manufacturer can (and are) doing the PHEV/E-REV thing. Maybe this will force Tesla to dig deeper and come up with the BEV Whitestar.

    They worked bloody hard on the ESS, seems a complete waste to shackle it to an ICE+generator
     
  19. AGR

    AGR Member

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    Lotus is not in the sedan business.

    There are enough "enterprises" in southern California that can design and build cars that it could be overwhelming in making a choice.

    Designing and building a prototype is relatively easy crossing the chasm to actually building a car on an assembly line is a different undertaking.
     
  20. malcolm

    malcolm Active Member

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    #20 malcolm, Apr 15, 2008
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2008
    Presumably they are allowed to draw them?

    In any case, didn't Tesla hire a lot of ex-Detroit people to work on Whitestar details?
     

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