Fisker Atlantic debuts in New York: Karma Chameleon

Fisker Atlantic Prototype

Fisker unveiled its Atlantic prototype prior to the New York Auto Show.

New York, NY – On the eve of the New York Auto Show’s media days Fisker Automotive jumped the gun and pulled the trigger (in – we’ll hope – an environmentally sensitive way: no gunpowder) on its next offering, the Fisker Atlantic prototype. And despite the muted reception of assembled media (they were – we think – all holding drinks) at the offsite venue, the Atlantic’s proportion doesn’t lack for drama, despite a size closer to Audi’s A5 than its bigger brother, the Fisker Karma. The full-size Karma, Fisker’s first salvo in the fierce competition for the luxury buyer, enjoys a footprint more similar to Audi’s A8 and a visceral appeal closer to the Batmobile.

Aimed at young families, the Atlantic is described as a luxury 4-door sporting sedan with a practical interior. Like the Karma, the Atlantic is a plug-in series hybrid which allows drivers to switch either manually or automatically between electric and gasoline modes. The end result provides a 40-mile commute without turning on its onboard gasoline charging station, or a 400-mile roadtrip with minimal environmental impact and maximum economy.

One look will have you hooked. With a tightly drawn exterior the Atlantic enjoys an athletic stance, employing a wide track, aggressive rubber and short overhangs front and rear. The overall proportion employs a little of this (Maserati), a little of that (Aston Martin), and with side sculpting more than a little of a volume manufacturer (Mazda), although that sculpting is more artfully employed. And with its longish wheelbase the Atlantic provides an uncommon amount of interior room for a rear-wheel drive – or available all-wheel drive – architecture.

Although the price point wasn’t revealed, suggestions from the podium would put pricing close to the top of the 3-Series BMW, or between $55K and $60K. And while Fisker execs regard this as the next step in Fisker’s transition from start-up automaker to mainstream manufacturer, it will – we’d suspect – take more than sexy sheetmetal and a few free drinks to get that particular ball fully rolling. That said, the Karma is out the door and on the road, generating some $75 million in sales revenue for Fisker Automotive in the first two months of 2013.