When Fisker unveiled its Ocean earlier this year at CES, the biggest shock was the price, $US37,499 ($52,386) for what could be a Tesla Model Y challenger. It also said then deliveries would be late 2021, but that was before it found somewhere to build the car. Now, Fisker says it finally found a manufacturer and Henrik Fisker, the man at the top, has matured, according to The Wall Street Journal’s anonymous sources.
That manufacturer would be the Canadian supplier Magna Steyr, and it will be built in Graz, Austria.
Fisker said in a statement that it expects to reach a definitive agreement “in the next few months” to have Magna Steyr start production of the Fisker Ocean at its Graz, Austria, plant as early as the fourth quarter of 2022.
A Magna spokesman confirmed the memorandum of understanding, but declined further comment.
Fisker added the companies were “also evaluating manufacturing options for the United States and China.”
Starting production in late 2022 is a full-year after Fisker’s original estimate at CES, but hey, it’s been a trying year for all of us. Henrik Fisker is, of course, the legendary designer of the BMW Z8 and Aston Martin DB9 and has also already given this a go once, with the Fisker Karma and the first version of his company.
That didn’t go well. At all. But in a new interview with the WSJ Fisker says he’s learned his lessons, really, he has! Think of him as the opposite of Elon Musk, who wants to build everything in-house and sell you cars. Henrik Fisker wants to outsource the work to companies like Magna Steyr and instead offer the car to customers in a novel subscription system.
“I’ve taken a lot of lessons from Fisker Automotive,” Mr. Fisker said. “I’ve also learned to sort of de-risk riskier decisions.”
Fisker told the WSJ that the company will generate $US10.6 ($15) billion in revenue two years after production has started and also have 19 per cent profit margins. Did I also mention that Fisker will be going public?
And Fisker is a changed man now, he really is!
Why will the result be different this time? Several people involved with Fisker Automotive say Mr. Fisker in the past had been reluctant to make decisions undercutting his aesthetic vision for a car, but he now is more mature and willing to compromise on critical engineering and production decisions. Some Fisker Automotive veterans are backing his new venture.
Besides the revenue prediction, Fisker’s hottest take in this story is the following:
“The last thing an EV startup should be looking to do is build its own factory,” Mr. Fisker said. “I think it’s a really dumb idea, quite frankly.”
Henrik Fisker is a wonderful designer of automobiles but his talents as a businessman are not always in evidence. I hereby award Fisker 0.6 Hyperloops. The Fisker Ocean looks great but there are still so, so many things that can go wrong.