Consumer Reports is learning all sorts of things about the Fisker Karma now that it has purchased one for testing, only to have it die with less than 200 miles on the odometer. After 48 hours in the dealer's repair shop – under warranty – the car is back in the CR fleet and is starting to get put through its paces.
With that public breakdown making waves, CR discovered that lots of Karma owners have been reporting their own issues with their new and expensive plug-in hybrids. Things like needing a new differential after less than 1,000 miles, a car shutting itself off at 35 mph and lots of trouble with the shifter. Most of these reports were put up by owners on FiskerBuzz. Of course, before CR got its Karma, the company issued two recalls, one for a software glitch and another for battery issues.
So, with all the problems, how does CR like the Karma on the track? The design is "simply stunning," it says, but the range-extending gasoline engine is loud when the 22-kWh battery is depleted. And the Fisker's SUV-like 5,395-pound weight doesn't help with handling. On the inside, CR says the touchscreen is also less than ideal, with a grayscale look and plenty of menu flipping that "makes MyFord Touch look like a brilliant design." Ouch.
Then there's this:
You can see what CR wrote about the car here and check out their new video review after the jump.
Just this weekend, for example, the speedometer and energy meter display disappeared when driving, on top of having several other rogue warning indicators appear last week. It is expected we'll be revisiting the dealership soon. We've had cars in the past that have been troublesome, but never anything like this.