Defective Cooling Fan Caused Fire In Fisker Karma, 2,400 Cars Voluntarily Recalled

5 years ago by Inside EVs Staff 4

A Defective Low Temperature Cooling Fan Ignites a 2012 Fisker Karma In Woodside, CA

After a brief investigation, Fisker has gotten to the root of a blaze that broke out on one their Fisker Karmas after its owner had left it parked to do some shopping.  Responsible was a defective low temperature cooling fan that ironically can sometimes short out, overheat, and cause a fire.

According to Fisker’s press release:

“The investigation conducted by Fisker engineers, working with an independent fire expert from Pacific Rim Investigative Services Group, has identified the root cause of the incident.

The investigation located the ignition source to the left front of the Karma, forward of the wheel, where the low temperature cooling fan is located. The final conclusion was that this sealed component had an internal fault that caused it to fail, overheat and start a slow burning fire.”

Fisker notes again that the incident was unrelated to any issues with the “lithium-ion battery pack, new technology components, engine component packaging or unique exhaust routing” on the Karma.

Fisker’s supplier, who remains unnamed, is responsible for the defect and not Fisker’s handling of the product.  The two companies are working together on a recall campaign to recall and replace the unit.

“Fisker has already contacted its retailer network. Customers are expected to be contacted by retailers, ahead of their receiving formal notice from the company by mail, to have the cooling fan replaced with a unit that meets the required specifications. At the same time an additional fuse will be installed for added protection.”

The owner of the Karma that burned, Rudy Berger, also commented on the process:

“I have been incredibly impressed with the way Fisker has handled this incident. I have personally started seven technology companies and know from direct experience that the US needs more innovative companies of this type, especially in the automobile sector.  Fisker is a great company and one that I am personally planning to invest in. I look forward to getting behind the wheel of my next Fisker.”

For the rest of us, perhaps the most interesting thing to come out of this incident, is that apparently we have can put a number on how many Karmas have been sold by Fisker, as Reuters reports “some 2,400” have been voluntarily recalled.

Fisker’s Press Release on Woodside fire/voluntary recall can be found here.

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4 responses to "Defective Cooling Fan Caused Fire In Fisker Karma, 2,400 Cars Voluntarily Recalled"

  1. GeorgeS says:

    Great news. It’s not the pack’s fault.

    1. staff says:

      Your quick George, you commented inside of 3 minutes of that being published!

      Yes good news to only be a insignificant part. Also pretty good news that Fisker has sold 2,400 Karmas. Not near their original (very high) estimates, but 2,400 $100,000+ cars in 7-8 months is not bad.

  2. Nick says:

    Seems pretty strange that this fan was not already protected by a fuse.

    I guess this may be an example of growing pains for a company which is new to
    automotive manufacturing.

    1. Open-Mind says:

      I agree … strange. Clearly the fan circuit should already have a fuse, either built into the fan or built into the car’s fuse box. Every fan will wear out eventually. The fact that they’re adding additional fuses as part of this recall makes it sound like a design flaw. Hope I’m wrong.