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My Neighbor has a Karma

I'm eagerly awaiting the Delivery of my Model S P85 sometime this month. As I was finishing the installation of my solar array I see the very recognizable "smiley face" grill of a Fisker Karma turning down my street. I live in Eunice, a small oil town in SE NM. EVs are not popular here and Romney won this county by 40 points. Still in shock that my Model S will be next door to a Fisker Karma in a town of <5000. Neighbors apparently won it in Las Vegas so they aren't "EV people"... just hope they plug it in!

Did anyone seriously consider the Karma? I almost feel sorry for Fisker since it gets to roundly destroyed by the Model S. I doesn't go as far, even with gas. It's almost half as efficient, even on electric. It's less powerful than a P85, even with two motors. It's also more expensive. Has less room; etc, etc. Elon was dead on when he called it a "mediocre product at a higher price"

@Mark E

One of my really good friends owns a Karma and I have driven his car many times. If I give you my perspective on a car it will be after I have been able to spend a considerable amount of time behind the wheel. Anyone can Google car reviews and post the links here. In my opinion these posts are near worthless as they give a perspective based on which car reviews (they have read( rather than first hand experience with the vehicle. The value of an owners forum is to get the perspective from owners not internet spin.

Here is very thorough evaluation of the 2012 Fisker Karma by Csaba Csere who was very positive about his evaluation of the Tesla Model S. The overall tone of his evaluation gives me the impression that he does not like to hate on cars and always gives an upbeat review. However, in the end, if you read between the lines he does not seem to endorse the car.

Why are you still here?

@SMOP - the links that I posted were from an owner and were pretty detailed - hence why I'd take them reasonably, however since I am in Australia and cannot actually see a Fisker, let alone drive one I appreciate if others who have actually driven one, think. At this stage, and from this distance, it appears that the Fisker has some issues that undermine the beauty of the styling (grill aside). I was very disappointed to hear that it was so heavy - but I also feel the same about the Model S.

I've seen a beta Model S, (last April) but once again there is currently no opportunity for me to drive one without flying 15,000km. I'll be in the US again in April and will book a test drive while I'm there.

I have driven the Roadster Sport, courtesy of Tesla for a weekend and was hooked on the responsiveness. I didn't like the high levels of interior noise at speed or the lack of practicality, or the price. (The Roadster Sport is $AU250,000).

Since this will actually be the first four door sedan that I have actually paid for - I'm used to driving 2 door vehicles - I'm concerned about the handling. Most reviewers have said that the Model S handles extremely well, yours appears to be the first I have heard to the contrary.

I'm keen to understand if you are comparing it to a super car, or another sedan - ie compared to an M5, or to a 458?

Similarly, I'm concerned about the lack of amenity in the interior and even more about potential build quality issues down the track.

If you have access and can be impartial then your opinion counts.

@Mark E

I appreciate your comments, but a little more research should be done on your side before quantifying internet links and "youtube" videos as being impartial.

This "Brian Greenstone" individual is a well known poster who was on another Fisker specific forum and has backed off on a lot of his comments with regards to the Karma. He had an axe to grind with Fisker Corporate.

He claims it is a nice daily driver but not "worth it" (also look at what he said about the Roadster). He says to buy an Aston instead. I find it quite an amusing (the contradictions inconsistent statements etc). Most everyone who goes public (in the way he has) probably has an axe to grind or some sort of motive. He went way over the top in his videos.

Make no mistake, both cars are heavy behemoth vehicles. I have been driving a Roadster daily for a few years now and it is an adjustment still to go to a 4600 monster. I prefer the Roadster because of its size and (to me) it is more satisfying than the Model S (to drive often).

I found the steering feel and the handling characteristics of the Karma to be superior to that of the Model S. The translation of road feel was superior in the Karma. The put it simply the car felt planted and tight. With regards to the Model S, the handling is very strange. I am not sure if it is the air suspension (have not driven a Model S with the coils yet) or what it is but when you really push the Model S to the limits it feels unstable and sloppy. The steering feel is artificial and at speeds not very linear (i.e. too heavy at higher speeds and lighter at lower speeds)- this is in all of the steering modes. The road feel is muted and not much is translated to the driver via steering wheel (think Buick more than M5).

I would say without hesitation that the Karma handles almost exactly like a 612 with a hint of DB9- very linear. The Model S feels more CGT with hints of Buick. There is so little road feel the car feels like an appliance. Its not a bad handling car I just think that they did not get the suspension tuning right and that may be the reason my car feels a bit unstable. I can't speak for others but there are people who do feel similarly (and have posted), they are just drowned out by the Tesla Fans.

The interior of my Model S does not feel like a 100k+ car. The interior of the Eco-Chic Karma that I drove felt closer to a 100k car (even without leather). The interior of my Roadster may not feel like a 158k car but you can tell its handbuilt and they wrapped whatever they could in leather and it has that quirky quality feel to it. The Model S lacks this interior pizzaz.

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