The Fisker Karma is once again under the spotlight following two widely publicized incident regarding a recent recall for its A123-supplied battery pack that posed a fire risk and a car that shut down only a few days after Consumer Reports purchased a brand new example from a dealer.
This time, a Karma is under investigation for a fire that broke out in a garage and quickly spread to a house in Houston last week, fortunately, without anyone being hurt in the incident.
“Yes, the Karma was the origin of the fire, but what exactly caused that we don't know at this time,” he said.
Baker said that the driver arrived home in the Fisker and parked it in the garage. Less than three minutes later, the Karma sports sedan was up in flames. According to the report, the car was not plugged in at the time of the fire and that the battery remained intact. Baker noted that the driver reported a smell of burning rubber right before the fire.
According to Baker, the Karma was a post-recall vehicle bought in April. “The car was brand-new. He still had paper tags on it, so it was 60 days old at most,” he said.
The Karma was a complete loss. There were two more cars parked in the garage including a Mercedes-Benz SUV and an Acura NSX.
"This looks just like golf cart fires we have down here," said Baker. “I've worked homicide scenes with less secrecy,” he added. “There have to be about 15 engineers down here working on this one.”
The investigation about the exact cause of the fire that is estimated to have caused damages of around US$100,000 not including the two other cars parked in the garage, is ongoing with a full report expected later in the year.
Fisker responded to the report about the fire with the following statement:
"Last week, Fisker Automotive was made aware of a garage fire involving three vehicles, including a Karma sedan, that were parked at a newly-constructed residence in Sugar Land, Texas. There were no injuries.
There are conflicting reports and uncertainty surrounding this particular incident. The cause of the fire is not yet known and is being investigated.
We have not yet seen any written report form the Fort Bend fire department and believe that their investigation is continuing. As of now, multiple insurance investigators are involved, and we have not ruled out possible fraud or malicious intent.
We are aware that fireworks were found in the garage in or around the vehicles. Also, an electrical panel located in the garage next to the vehicles is also being examined by the investigators as well as fire department officials. Based on initial observations and inspections, the Karma's lithium ion battery pack was not being charged at the time and is still intact and does not appear to have been a contributing factor in this incident.
Fisker will continue to participate fully in the investigation but will not be commenting further until all the facts are established."
Story References, Photo Credits: Autoweek