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Fisker Sedan

Henrik Fisker introduces the company’s new plug-in hybrid vehicle, the Atlantic, during a preview in New York.

If you’re an electric car fan wanting to get your hands on the new Fisker Atlantic sedan, pictured above, the wait will be a little longer than originally planned, Automotive News reports:

"Fisker Automotive, the hybrid sports-car startup backed by venture investors and the U.S. government, said production of its next model, the Atlantic sedan, has been pushed back to late 2014 or 2015".

Fisker, in a presentation Monday afternoon to investors, said the mid-size gasoline-electric car is now scheduled to enter pre-production in 2014.

Fisker, which has raised more than $1.2bn in capital and picked up a $529m federal government loan guarantee, has been selling the $100,000 Fisker Karma sports car since late last year. But like its high-profile competitor Tesla Motors TSLA +1.57%, Fisker is using an attention-grabbing luxury sports car as a marketing tool for the more affordable models it wants to sell in the future.

One of those is the Atlantic, which, while still in the sporty end of the market, was planned to be priced somewhere closer to $50,000. It was also meant to be made at a former GM factory in Delaware, but ever since its $593m government loan was frozen, it has been reconsidering where to build the vehicle.

In an interview with the WSJ’s Will Lyons, published today, the company’s founder Henrik Fisker didn’t directly comment on the future of the Delaware plant, but did make it clear he is looking for an outside partner to help deal with the large costs of setting up a new manufacturing system:

“The toughest task for us,” Mr. Fisker says, “is the fact that the car industry is probably the most capital-intensive industry in the world. That is why we don’t see a lot of new car companies launched, let alone succeed.”

He points to £100 million ($160 million) of new funding that Fisker has just secured to help product development, but he admits that in the long term there is room for an original equipment manufacturer, or OEM, partner to come on board to help increase expansion.

“It would be attractive for us in the long term to have a large partner,” Mr. Fisker says, “because it gives us the opportunity to expand faster, to share certain components, platforms and technology. So it is definitely one thing we will be looking into.”

source: wsj

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