Implying it's ready to keep plugging away, Fisker Automotive this week announced two new executive-level appointments: Former Chrysler CEO Tom LaSorda to be vice chairman of the board and former Jaguar Land Rover North America exec Richard Beattie as chief commercial officer.

Fisker created the role of vice chairman of the board and chairman of the board's strategy council for LaSorda, and this isn't the first time he's gotten involved with a green car company. Back in March of 2010, he joined the board of directors at Electrovaya and still serves as strategic adviser to the CEO. He is also the lead director on the AltE board of directors. If you want a fun trip down memory lane, read these remarks that LaSorda gave to Congress in 2007 about how fuel-efficient DaimlerChrysler's vehicles would become.

Beattie has his hands a bit less full juggling different companies, but he does, "bring a wealth of global experience from premium brands," Fisker says. Since the company is still planning on selling 15,000 plug-in hybrid Karmas around the world at $100,000 a pop, it's going to need the help. CEO Henrik Fisker said in a statement that, "The addition of Richard Beattie to our leadership team completes our transition from a start-up car company to a volume manufacturer. His experience in the premium car sector will be crucial as we continue to reach new customers in both Europe and Asia." We shall see.
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Fisker Automotive Appoints Tom LaSorda as Vice Chairman of the Board

Former President and CEO of Chrysler Group builds on existing global leadership strength of the Fisker Board
Brings extensive automotive operational experience to Fisker as the Karma sedan reaches first customers

Anaheim, California, USA – December 15, 2011: Fisker Automotive is pleased to announce the appointment of Tom LaSorda to the newly created role of Vice Chairman of the Fisker Board and Chairman of the Board's Strategy Council. LaSorda will also work as an executive advisor to the management team on day to day operations, reporting to co‑founder and CEO, Henrik Fisker.

A well-known automotive industry executive with more than 30 years of experience, LaSorda was a former CEO, President, and Vice Chairman of Chrysler Group, a company he joined in 2000 before retiring in 2009. He played an integral role in the sale of Chrysler to the Fiat Group. Prior to his service with Chrysler, LaSorda held a number of executive positions at General Motors over a 23 year career.

He is currently a co-founder of a venture capital fund – Stage 2 Innovations – with Manoj Bhargava, the sole investor and owner of 5-hour ENERGY based in Farmington Hills, Michigan.

In his new role, LaSorda will work closely with Fisker Automotive's Chief Operations Officer, Bernhard Koehler, Chief Financial Officer, Joe DaMour, and newly appointed Chief Commercial Officer, Richard Beattie.

"We are delighted to welcome Tom to the leadership team of Fisker Automotive," said co-founder and CEO Henrik Fisker. "The company is entering a new stage of growth, to which Tom's strategic vision and experience will be vital. His appointment sends a strong statement about the future direction of Fisker Automotive as it becomes a global car company."

Ray Lane, Fisker Automotive's Chairman said, "LaSorda is joining a Board that has recently been expanded to include Mindy Grossman, Scott Sandell and Timothy Shriver."

Mindy Grossman is CEO and a Director of Home Shopping Network (HSN) where she oversees a $3 billion retail portfolio and brings extensive retail and apparel industries through her experience at HSN, Nike, Ralph Lauren, and Tommy Hilfiger.

Scott Sandell is a general partner with New Enterprise Associates (NEA) where he focuses on investments in information technology and alternative energy and oversees NEA's operation in China. Sandell is also a board member for numerous green energy and technology companies.

Timothy Shriver is an entrepreneur and film producer, who is also Chairman and CEO of the Special Olympics which serves nearly four million intellectually disabled athletes in 179 countries around the world.

ABOUT FISKER AUTOMOTIVE, INC.
Fisker Automotive is an American car company, founded in 2007, committed to producing electric vehicles with extended range (EVer) that deliver uncompromised responsible luxury. The company is designing and developing the world's first line of premium electric plug-in hybrids representing the company's firm belief that environmentally conscious cars need not sacrifice passion, style, or performance. Fisker Automotive is a global company that is redefining luxury for the modern sports car buyer. For more information on the brand and the Fisker Karma Sedan, please go to http://fiskerautomotive.com.

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FISKER AUTOMOTIVE APPOINTS RICHARD BEATTIE AS CHIEF COMMERCIAL OFFICER

• Will lead marketing, sales and customer service teams as company grows
• Brings a wealth of global experience from premium brands

Anaheim, California, USA – December 14, 2011: Fisker Automotive is pleased to announce the appointment of Richard Beattie to the newly created role of Chief Commercial Officer.

Based in Fisker Automotive's Southern California headquarters, Richard will take responsibility for Fisker Automotive's global marketing, sales, and customer service divisions as its first range-extended luxury vehicle, the Fisker Karma, continues to be delivered to customers worldwide.

Richard Beattie was formerly responsible for sales and marketing at Jaguar Land Rover North America from 2002 to 2007, before taking over the position of Executive Vice President of Marketing and Sales for Jaguar North America in 2009.

Prior to this, he was VP of Marketing, Sales, and Service at Lincoln Mercury, having risen through the ranks at Ford both in Europe and the USA, including a posting as President and CEO of Mazda's North American operations. He brings a solid management record with premium and luxury automotive brands.

"The addition of Richard Beattie to our leadership team completes our transition from a start-up car company to a volume manufacturer," said co- founder and CEO Henrik Fisker. "His experience in the premium car sector will be crucial as we continue to reach new customers in both Europe and Asia."

In the newly created position of Chief Commercial Officer, Richard will work alongside existing COO Bernhard Koehler and CFO Joe DaMour.

ABOUT FISKER AUTOMOTIVE, INC.

Fisker Automotive is an American car company, founded in 2007, committed to producing electric vehicles with extended range (EVer) that deliver uncompromised responsible luxury. The company is designing and developing the world's first line of premium electric plug-in hybrids representing the company's firm belief that environmentally conscious cars need not sacrifice passion, style, or performance. Fisker Automotive is a global company that is redefining luxury for the modern sports car buyer. For more information on the brand and the Fisker Karma sedan, please go to http://fiskerautomotive.com.

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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 10 Comments
      wardialer
      • 6 Months Ago
      wasn't he that baseball coach from the ultra slimfast commercials they later had to revise? "hey, if i can do it... YOU can do it!" later revised to "hey, if i can do it... (maybe) you can do it!"
      Dave
      • 6 Months Ago
      Fiskier sources engines from GM (and plans to source from BMW in the future) and drivetrains from Quantum (Q-drive) So, having executives who can successfully cultivate relationships is of primary importance. Henrik Fisker designs beautiful cars. If Fisker can affordably source the best drivetrain technology (whether its solid state batteries or fuel cells or ICE range extenders) from high volume manufacturers they have a chance at success.
      electronx16
      • 6 Months Ago
      Apparently there is at least 7 reasons why it's a bad idea for big-company execs to get involved with a start up (and vice versa...): http://blog.startupprofessionals.com/2011/12/7-reasons-big-company-executives-fail.html
      Letstakeawalk
      • 6 Months Ago
      I'm also impressed with the addition of Mindy Grossman to the BoD. Good to see Fisker bringing in some good heads!
      Letstakeawalk
      • 6 Months Ago
      Here's some Fisker suspension pron if anyone's interested: http://blogs.insideline.com/straightline/2011/12/suspension-walkaround-2012-fisker-karma.html
      goodoldgorr
      • 6 Months Ago
      Im minding if that compagny will ever see profit. They gonna do like tesla and just eat capital. Their car is very costly to build and is not seeked by paying consumers. Most battery car are already old faschion and headed to the museum.
      Dan Frederiksen
      • 6 Months Ago
      didn't work for aptera
        Nick From Montreal
        • 6 Months Ago
        @Dan Frederiksen
        Good point but Aptera got the Detroit guys too early. In the case of Fisker, they can't change the car's design and they won't have to raise any money -- Just grow the business. Also, Fisker has had experienced Detroit people from the start. They are just doubling down now.
          Marco Polo
          • 6 Months Ago
          @Nick From Montreal
          @ Nick From Montreal Fisker himself is an experienced auto-executive. It depends on the executive. It's not much point in employing and executive whose sole experience has been as cog in the wheel of a very big machine. But the contacts, experience and knowledge of a seasoned executive can be invaluable, especially in training younger staff.
        Grendal
        • 6 Months Ago
        @Dan Frederiksen
        And hopefully these execs won't be wanting to put 10 pound brake pedals in the vehicle. But considering the Karma is already heavy as hell it probably won't make much of a difference. I still hope Fisker succeeds. I'm not all that interested in their vehicles but it doesn't mean others won't be willing to buy. The Nina will be the make or break vehicle for Fisker.