Fisker has long claimed to have ambitions beyond the high-end-luxury-sports-hybrid market and here is their first salvo of seriousness: the mid-range luxury-sports-hybrid Atlantic.
Called the Atlantic, the stunning all-new four-door saloon developed under the codename of Nina will go head to head with the BMW 5 Series and Audi A6 when it goes on sale ‘sometime in 2013’. It will cost around $63,000 after tax rebates, according to the company.
Powered by a similar electric drivetrain with petrol engined generator set up as the Karma, the Atlantic ditches the occasionally rough-edged GM-sourced four-cylinder turbo in favour of a shiny, new 240bhp/260lbft BMW unit.
No official details have yet been released about the Atlantic’s chassis, but the company has confirmed that the car will be offered in both rear-wheel drive and four-wheel drive layouts. Performance versions echoing BMW’s M Sport models will be added to the range after launch, as will a convertible. A small SUV to go up against the Audi Q5 is also being considered.
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We’ve seen the concept and if you’ve seen Mission Impossible 4, you’ve seen the coupe. Now, here’s the BMW i8 Spyder:
It’ll be unveiled at this year’s Beijing auto show later this month and is, as you’d imagine, a pretty good sign that Munich’s going to give us a drop-top to join the i8 coupe. For those hard of memory, that’s the 155mph, 100mpg sportster due to land in showrooms come 2014.
BMW has kept the swan doors, which swivel up like the wings of a, umm, swan… They’re retained thanks to the amount of carbon that’s used in the i8’s super-stiff passenger ‘Life’ cell, which is made from carbonfibre reinforced plastic (CFRP).
Underneath, there’s an aluminium chassis with a lithium-ion battery buttered along its length, keeping the centre of gravity nice and low and achieving a 50:50 weight distribution. It’s got the same plug-in powertrain as the coupe, too; a petro-electro melange of 129bhp electric motor driving the front wheels and three-cylinder turbo petrol engine sending 220bhp to the rears (that’s 349bhp in all).
All together, it makes 406lb ft of torque, which gets it from 0-62mph in 5.0 seconds and a tethered top speed of 155mph. And it’s claimed it can do 20 miles of FWD on the battery alone.
We have to admit that we cringed a bit when we first saw this car in profile, but once you get a close up look at it (peep the gallery above), this car isn’t that bad looking. We still prefer the balanced, well tailored suit of the current 5 series — however the new 3 is leaner in back (we see a little bit of E24 in the thinner Hofmeister kink), a bit more
droopy aggressive up front, and best of all, this isn’t a straight up 7-series clone. You can see ‘tear duct’ cues from BMW’s new i-series in the headlamp treatment (by the way, a 3-series hybrid is part of the new mix) and if this means a new M3 is around the corner then welcome, new 3-series. Please stay a while. We’re sure you’ll sell well among the young executive set.
More details at topgear.com
If there were three eco-responsible cars to look forward to in the coming years, they would be the Tesla Model S, the BMW i-Series, and this car here, the Fisker Surf — a shooting brake (nee ‘Wagon’) version of the Fisker Karma (ok, that makes four cars to look forward to.)
The Fiskers are plug-in hybrids which mean that they charge much like the Chevy Volt. When the batteries run low at 50 miles, a BMW-sourced turbocharged 4 cylinder will get you up to an additional 250 miles before needed a recharge or refuel.
Fisker is hinting at a late 2012 start date for production of both the Karma and the Surf. The safe bet is for a 2013 debut.
See the rest of the gallery by clicking through to TopGear.com