Tesla has pretty much had the electric vehicle market to itself the past few years. However, an old rival that had gone bankrupt, Fisker, is upping the ante with a new sport utility vehicle priced below $40,000 that will be available next year, according to a story on Tech Xplore.
Fisker has undergone a lengthy restructuring since its 2013 bankruptcy. The brand, led by former BMW designer Henrik Fisker, had received $192 million in U.S. government loans and left $139 million of that unpaid. The company’s assets were sold to Chinese auto parts maker Wanxiang.
The company’s original offering, the 100,000 Fisker Karma released in 2012 attracted buyers including Justin Bieber, Leonardo DiCaprio and Ashton Kutcher, the Tech Xplore story says.
Fisker reportedly made its announcement in a press release with images of the new vehicle, saying that a drivable prototype would be available later this year. If so, the automaker would be taking dead aim at Tesla’s Model Y, a comparably-priced crossover SUV that was recently unveiled.
Like Tesla, Fisker will sell directly to consumers without dealers. The company said it is “currently finalizing the selection of a facility, located in the United States, to produce the all-electric SUV.”
The new car has an expected range of some 300 miles (500 kilometers) between charges. Fisker decided to produce this vehicle first instead of a $129,000 electric luxury car, which the company says it will produce later. The company projects to eventually have three different vehicles.
“Our team set out on a mission to create an affordable EV that’s more exciting and emotion-stirring than what the market has been offering,” Henrik Fisker was quoted as saying. “We’re now excited to be introducing a vehicle that truly reinvents the SUV.”