Wanxiang Group Co. President Pin Ni, who is responsible for the recovery and re-start of troubled Fisker Automotive suggests that it will be some time before the brand can begin manufacturing again,
“…the biggest issue is to solve the problems. There are about 250 bugs in this we need to de-bug. I often say that Wanxiang can afford to make cars, but Wanxiang cannot afford to make bad cars.”
One may remember that the Fisker Karma was launched in 2007 amid prodigious amounts of hoopla for its hybrid-electric powerplant, and exotic looks. At the time, it appeared that Tesla Motors was going to have a fight on its hands, but in the end the competition came to naught, as the Fisker proceeded to meltdown due to a host of quality assurance problems, issues with the EPA and its measured mileage statements and production delays, on top of issues with the car’s battery system and its propensity to catch fire.
Subsequently the brand had to file for bankruptcy in 2013, followed by an assets purchase by Chinese Wanxiang Group. The company then proceeded to move the California operation off-shore, and believed that the new owners would quickly put the brand right. Now, that plan is no longer viable.
“Our goal is to fix all the issues and get the car back on the road, but this car has to be a good car. It cannot be a car with problems,” Ni said. “We want to make this car in the United States, (but) this too is determined. But in terms of a detailed plan, we are still evaluating.
We need to carefully evaluate not only the manufacturing side, but who will be our partners for the future Fisker in terms of supply chain. I don’t think we have a fixed plan yet. In fact, we are very flexible,” he concluded.