After confirming that the A123 battery in the Fisker Karma has a battery safety issue and then figuring out a way to fix the problem, Fisker and the NHTSA have announced an official recall for 239 Karmas. The official reason for the recall is that:

Within the high-voltage battery, certain hose clamps may have been positioned incorrectly during assembly. if positioned incorrectly, the battery compartment cover could interfere with the hose clamps, potentially causing a coolant leak from the cooling hoses.
Consequence: If coolant enters the battery compartment, an electrical short could occur possibly resulting in a fire
.

The recalled vehicles were built between July 1 and November 3 of this year and Fisker will replace the components at no cost to the vehicle owners, starting in January. NHTSA says Karma drivers should call either Fisker or the NHTSA for more information. Phone numbers are available after the jump.
Show full PR text
FISKER / KARMA 2012
Manufacturer: FISKER AUTOMOTIVE, INC. Mfr's Report Date: DEC 21, 2011
NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 11V598000 NHTSA Action Number: N/A
Component: ELECTRICAL SYSTEM: BATTERY: PROPULSION SYSTEM
Potential Number of Units Affected: 239
Summary:
FISKER IS RECALLING CERTAIN MODEL YEAR 2012 FISKER KARMA PASSENGER CARS MANUFACTURED FROM JULY 1, 2011, THROUGH NOVEMBER 3, 2011. WITHIN THE HIGH-VOLTAGE BATTERY, CERTAIN HOSE CLAMPS MAY HAVE BEEN POSITIONED INCORRECTLY DURING ASSEMBLY. IF POSITIONED INCORRECTLY, THE BATTERY COMPARTMENT COVER COULD INTERFERE WITH THE HOSE CLAMPS, POTENTIALLY CAUSING A COOLANT LEAK FROM THE COOLING HOSES.
Consequence:
IF COOLANT ENTERS THE BATTERY COMPARTMENT, AN ELECTRICAL SHORT COULD OCCUR POSSIBLY RESULTING IN A FIRE.
Remedy:
FISKER WILL NOTIFY OWNERS, AND DEALERS WILL REPLACE THE HIGH-VOLTAGE BATTERY WITH A NEW PART AT NO COST TO THE OWNER. THE SAFETY RECALL IS EXPECTED TO BEGIN DURING JANUARY 2012. OWNERS MAY CONTACT FISKER CONSUMER AFFAIRS AT 1-855-575-7577, OPTION 2, 6AM - 7PM (PST) MONDAY THROUGH FRIDAY.
Notes:
FISKER'S RECALL CAMPAIGN NUMBER IS 51611001. OWNERS MAY ALSO CONTACT THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION'S VEHICLE SAFETY HOTLINE AT 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), OR GO TO HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV .


I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 34 Comments
      Rotation
      • 3 Years Ago
      They said it only affected 50 units, now it affects 239, which is presumably every one of them. I'm never impressed when companies think that deceit is the best way to win customers.
        Letstakeawalk
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Rotation
        Fisker said that 50 "customer cars" were affected, meaning that those cars had to be brought back by their owners. The rest of the cars are either dealer demo cars, or haven't yet been delivered to their owner - mostly sitting in distribution lots. There's a difference there. Fisker has been extremely up front about this; their actual customers have known about this for a little while already because they've already been contacted personally.
          Dan Frederiksen
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Letstakeawalk
          you are being dishonest as I never promised anything. or even implied production dates or numbers. and this is not after new delays. the 1500 was the reduced number they gave after the delays, not long ago. if the actual number of delivered cars is 60 or so then that's yet another broken promise in a long line. I hope they do well but they are not showing good signs. they really can't afford to fumble until model S comes out.
          Dan Frederiksen
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Letstakeawalk
          well if you want to argue honesty I think you also have to mention that they said they would deliver 1500 cars by end of year but seemingly have only delivered 50. that's no small disparity.
          Letstakeawalk
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Letstakeawalk
          You are aware of the reasons why Fisker wasn't able to meet their anticipated production numbers. The aforementioned supplier issues, a strike at Valmet, EPA testing delays... Failing to meet a self-imposed goal is disappointing, but it's not dishonest. Of all people, Dan F, you should understand that, since you've consistently failed to make any sort of progress on your own prototype.
      PR
      • 3 Years Ago
      Looks like they are being smart and playing it over-cautious and issuing a recall on all the Karma's already delivered, instead of just the 50 they know have the problem. That bodes well for Fisker's customer service moving forward.
      Joeviocoe
      • 3 Years Ago
      why isn't Yahoo Finance calling this a flop yet?
      Marco Polo
      • 3 Years Ago
      Enough! Ok, I think everyone has got the message that some hose clamps on the new Fisker-Karma " may have been positioned incorrectly during assembly" Karma is recalling under 300 units to check, and if necessary, correct free of charge. Not really an inherent design or quality issue, certainly not worth all this fuss.
        EZEE
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Marco Polo
        Marco did you just yell at all of us? We were all having a fine time bickering... :D Happy new year, btw. You being an Aussie, you beat us to it. Since you do live a day in the future, you COULD now and then let us know what the Dow Jones will close at, so the rest of us could make some $$. Just sayin...
          Marco Polo
          • 3 Years Ago
          @EZEE
          Ezee Happy New Year to you also, may 2012 bring greater prosperity. Um,..Dow Jones, isn't he the bludger over there, who brought only a dozen beer? New years day in Melbourne is 32c degrees! My pool has become very popular among the younger and the bar super popular among everybody! Tomorrow I will host a retired persons party on my property in the country. The temperature will seem cooler since a combination of Mountains, trees and river make the air seem more bearable. The greatest delight is seeing our two converted EV community buses in operation. My brother tells me that the temperature where he lives in the UK is 11c degrees! but you can't complain with 24c in Orlando for New years day?
        Dan Frederiksen
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Marco Polo
        it's not the recall that's significant (although A123 stock took a hit). it's the number of cars recalled. if only 50 cars have been delivered to customers that's not a good sign. gotta wonder what the problem is.
          Marco Polo
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Dan Frederiksen
          @DF Q. "gotta wonder what the problem is". A . You !
        JeremyD
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Marco Polo
        I agree... just like the Volt fires a big deal is made out of almost nothing. Lets wait for the sales numbers to roll in.
      Dave D
      • 3 Years Ago
      Geez folks, what is with all the hate here? It's a simple recall, easily fixed and nobody even got hurt, much less killed. Why does everyone love to hate the Fisker and the Volt so much? They're both good cars and do what they were designed to do. I got to ride in the Fisker and it's a great car...really, realy nice and well made. I'm more of a pure EV fan because they happen to be ok for my needs, but I sure don't begrudge people who like the EREVs. If you need the range then you simply need the range. Sometimes it feels like people get on here and are essentially saying: "You wore a red sweater??? I hate red sweaters! You bastard, how dare you!!!" If you don't like the Fisker then just shut up and don't buy one. Nobody is forcing you.
      Exooc news
      • 3 Years Ago
      Fisker got first EVER mode right and therefore has my sympathy.... Problems with new tech batteries are kinda expected and batteries will be getting better and better each month ... remember exploding batteries in notebooks we had some years ago? What I would like to see is cheap EVER mode car with stack-able batteries so i can add more as i will be able to afford them or when technology changes.
        paulwesterberg
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Exooc news
        Yea 400lbs and 20mpg in range extending mode is a real home run.
          Dan Frederiksen
          • 3 Years Ago
          @paulwesterberg
          actually I think it's 2400kg which is over 5000lbs
          EZEE
          • 3 Years Ago
          @paulwesterberg
          @exoc With the range and price of a tesla, the Fisker has little going for it, beyond being more 'exclusive' and a gas motor that will take over on longer trips. Even that, though, is questionable, seeing as how far do you plan on driving it. As far as cheap power...well, carry an extension cord, and hide it with leaves and sticks...
          Exooc news
          • 3 Years Ago
          @paulwesterberg
          well based on EU TUV testing fisker got 51miles EV range which is enough for daily work trip with powerfull car without compromises compared to 'normal' cars. Weight is less important if you have free or cheap source of electric energy.
          Dan Frederiksen
          • 3 Years Ago
          @paulwesterberg
          Ezee, I have suffered oceans of stupidity. this wont put me over the edge : ) deeply unimpressed sure but that's par for the course. as I'm sure you know, happy Dans are in short supply : )
          EZEE
          • 3 Years Ago
          @paulwesterberg
          I looked it up. The Fisker karma weighs JUST LESS than a Ford Expedition, at about 5,300lbs. And off in the distance...the sound of Dan's head as it exploded, raining bits of debris upon shocked on lookers...
          Marco Polo
          • 3 Years Ago
          @paulwesterberg
          @Ezee Why would you compare a Tesla roadster with a Fisker-Karma? A two seat roadster, with a 4 door grand tourer? Get real... Who cares how much the Fisker-Karma weighs? Those who buy the car don't give a rodent's rectum! The weight of this sort of vehicle is of only minor consequence. Only the terminally anorak would bother themselves with it's weight or 'efficiency'. (and they can't afford the car anyway). The purchasers of the Fisker-Karma are not really interested in purchasing a 'fuel sipping" vehicle. Nor are they buying a Porsche, they are buying a 4 door grand tourer with a 'greener' 'cool' technology. The Karma is not 'greener' than a Leaf, but it is 'greener' than a Lambo, or a Maserati! (Well, anything is). The Fisker-Karma helps promote Plug-in EV technology to people who would never consider buying an iMev etc. As such it does a good job. Will it 'save the planet'? Of course not! But it doesn't pretend to save the planet. It is what it is, a 4 door glamorous vehicle, with a percentage of EV technology. But, Henrick Fisker has actually produced a vehicle. Critics, who mutter on about some weird mantra of lightweight etc, and who have never produced, (or even purchased), an EV, and yet pretend to an expertise the evidently lack, are simply time wasters.
      • 3 Years Ago
      WOW! 239 $100K+ cars. That "green" investment Obama made in FINNISH "green" cars is really paying off. How much was that again? $529 million? And they've managed to sell between 50 and 239 cars? What a BARGAIN! I'll bet the deadly killing smog from the infernal combustion engines that were replaced by the COAL FIRED electricity has ended globull warming all by this one crony capitalist move.
        Dave D
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Fiftycal, Do you really not know what is going on with Fisker and the loan or do you WANT to say things that are not true for political reasons? Seriously??? The money they got is to build out their US facility for production. That is ongoing work for their next generation car and we have yet to see if that will pan out or not, but it was spent on American manufacturing facilities. As for the recalls....name a car maker that doesn't have them. How many millions of cars did Toyota and GM and everyone else recall this year? As for your implied criticism that they only produced between 50-239 cars....are you really that stupid? They just started producing them and plan to do so for a long time. And again, that $529 million was not spent on these cars. You're going to have to either educate yourself or grow up. Either way, you are way off base here.
        EZEE
        • 3 Years Ago
        Good Heavens
        Dan Frederiksen
        • 3 Years Ago
        you might be ignorant Fitty. I'd say chance of 1
      Ashton
      • 3 Years Ago
      I hope Tesla is learning from the mistakes that Fisker & the Volt have made.
        Letstakeawalk
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Ashton
        Tesla made plenty of their own mistakes to learn from; starting a new auto company from scratch has never been an easy thing to do. Even Henry Ford's first company failed because of too low quality and too high prices. Fisker can be partially absolved due to this being a supplier issue (as was the paint and the leather), but ultimately it's the Fisker badge that people will remember.
          Letstakeawalk
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Letstakeawalk
          You're absolutely right, but "...ultimately it's the Fisker badge that people will remember." A123 messed up their product, and Valmet messed up by letting the cars through QC after noticing leaks. But Fisker is the one that has to make it right.
          Letstakeawalk
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Letstakeawalk
          For the record, A123 is the one that is accepting the blame for delivering a defective product. The defect was *inside* the battery case - there would be no way for anyone else (Valmet, Fisker) to realize that something was amiss until after installation and operation. "A123 Systems is committed to designing, developing and manufacturing batteries and energy storage systems that deliver both high performance as well as exceptional safety. We have determined that some of the battery packs we produce for Fisker Automotive could have a potential safety issue relating to the battery cooling system. Specifically, certain hose clamps that are part of the battery pack’s internal cooling system were misaligned, positioned in such a way that could potentially cause a coolant leak. Over time, it is possible that in certain rare circumstances, this coolant leak could potentially lead to an electrical short circuit. There have been no related battery performance or safety incidents with cars in the field. However, A123 and Fisker are committed to safety and are taking immediate, proactive steps to prevent any issue from occurring. We have developed a confirmed repair for this situation. In the short time since recognizing this potential safety issue, the root cause was quickly identified, a fix has been developed and corrective action is well underway. In total, fewer than 50 customer cars are involved in this action. We expect this situation to have minimal financial impact on A123, and our relationship with Fisker remains strong. We remain vigilant in our quality assurance efforts and confident in our ability to deliver safe, reliableproducts to our customers. Thank you for your continued support of A123 Systems. David Vieau CEO, A123 Systems"
          EVnerdGene
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Letstakeawalk
          you could say everything on the Karma is a supplier problem since Frisker doesn't manufacture it
    • Load More Comments