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Fisker to Sell Third Model for Under $40,000 Within 5 Years

Executive chairman says the company will sell a cheaper plug-in hybrid, priced under the Atlantic, by partnering with a major automaker.

Fisker wants to sell a third plug-in hybrid for less than $40,000 with the backing of a major automaker, Executive Chairman Henrik Fisker told MSN Autos today.

The California startup, which sells the $103,000 Karma sedan and will introduce the smaller Atlantic sedan next year for roughly half the price, wants to share its technology and production costs with a large automaker starting in 2013. This new third model would be priced less than the Atlantic (pictured) and could be ready in less than five years, Fisker said.

“With a strategic partner, we will be able to make an electric vehicle extended-range premium car for under $40,000,” Fisker said during a brief stop in Boston. “It can come much sooner than you think. It doesn’t have to be five years away, let’s put it that way.”

So far, the company has held talks with three automakers in hopes of a long-term partnership that would allow it to develop a broader range of vehicles in less time. General Motors supplies engines and other components for the Karma. But if Fisker is to remain independent — despite CEO Tony Posawatz’s suggestion on Monday that Fisker may launch an initial public offering — it said it has to become a technology supplier and possibly co-develop a plug-in hybrid for another automaker.

“I think the advantage for any automaker to come to Fisker Automotive is that they don’t have to defocus their internal engineering team, which is already set up as a very well-oiled machine to crank out gasoline and diesel-powered cars,” Fisker said. “We don’t mind, with a strategic [original equipment manufacturer], sharing our technology, our speed, our consumer experience — all of that, we have a lot to offer. If we do a strategic partnership, we can get some of our cars quicker to market.”


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