Fisker is back with an electric SUV cheaper than the Model 3
In Los Angeles, Fisker released its new Ocean electric SUV, and it's designed to be totally efficient. That's not just in terms of emissions and range, although it can travel upwards of 300 miles on a single charge, but also about the entire business model. That leads the car to be significantly cheaper than a Tesla's Model 3 to purchase, but you don't even have to do that.
California Mode effectively turns the vehicle into a convertible
Fisker will offer a flexible lease, directly through the company, doing away with middle men to keep the cost low. It'll only cost you $379 per month after a $3000 down payment. The car can be returned in as short as a month or as long as several years. Through the Fisker app, owners can request maintenance directly from the company. If you want to do that maintenance yourself, well, you can't. The hood cannot be opened, as it's fixed into place. In doing away with complicated systems, like those hood latches, the company says it makes production easier - and keeps costs low. The design is also sustainable, with plastics on the vehicle made of waste from the California beaches. That's the root of the Ocean name.
Top-line versions will feature solar panels on the roof offering up to 1000 extra miles of range
That total cost will be only $37,499 in the United States, although federal tax credits will bring that all the way down to $29,999, over five grand less than Tesla's Model 3. Of course, that price will go up with options, of which it seems there will be many. It can be had in a single-motor FWD layout or dual-motor AWD layout, and there will be many different power options, including a high-performance model aiming for a 0-60 time of 2.9 seconds. Top versions will feature a full-length solar roof, which will increase the range of the vehicle, by up to 1000 per year in "good-weather" locations. That roof, as well as all the windows, can open in California Mode to allow an open air experience, like a convertible.
The wide front profile leads to the promise that it's "one of the best handling vehicles"
The car is designed to be "one of the best handling vehicles," and features a wide design for stability. That gives it an aggressive, wide stance that continues throughout the vehicle. The headlights feature the double-bars of Fisker's logo, and the turn signals are placed below them to separate them from the main lights. There's also an indicator mounted on the top of the rear for larger vehicles such as trucks. The design also incorporates an opening for front radar, part of the autonomous systems of the vehicle that will be shown before it goes on sale.
Additional indicators will aim up, allowing visibility for trucks and tall vehicles
To get inside, the door handles, flush with the body, come out on touch. The car has a digital gauge cluster and large center screen. That screen controls most of the vehicle functions, with only five buttons, the most important: one that allows drivers to search the systems, one that returns the screen to the home page, and three that each control temperature, fan speed, and audio volume. The entire is entirely vegan and made entirely sustainably. It'll comfortably fit five people.
The interior has a massive center screen with only five buttons for key controls
Like Teslas, this will have a very minimalistic interior. This vehicle, though, will show speed directly in front of the driver in both the gauge cluster or the head-up display. It's the screen that really shined at the launch, with the karaoke built-in. The screen will display the lyrics of the chosen song, so you can sing along. It's designed to do that with the music, although that couldn't work during the launch. So the launch had five people, self-admitted as poor singers, singing along to Hotel California without instrumentals.
The vehicle has a very modern front-end, with wrap-around headlights
Deliveries of the Ocean are planned to begin in 2022, and you can reserve yours with a $250 deposit. Of course, Tesla has demonstrated that these target dates don't always go to plan. Fisker has said, though, that quite a few people have already reserved their car. It seems like it's a worthy competitor for Tesla. It's set to be cheaper than their cheapest car, and massively cheaper than Tesla's offering of an electric SUV, the Model X, starting at $84,000.