Fisker's Losses Mount as It Readies for Production of Its Electric SUV

Fisker's Losses Mount as It Readies for Production of Its Electric SUV

Fisker Inc. is charging ahead with plans to get its first electric vehicle into production by the end of next year amid increased competition from startups and established automakers, despite ballooning losses.

The Manhattan Beach-based startup automaker posted losses of $176.8 million in the first quarter of 2021, compared to $1.13 million in the first quarter of 2020.

Fisker said Monday it has more than 16,000 reservations for the Ocean EV SUV and is on track for a September 2022 start of production at the Magna Steyr plant in Austria. First deliveries would begin at the end of that year, but the final production version of the vehicle would appear first in November at the Los Angeles Auto Show. Fisker is aiming for a 350-mile range on most models and a starting price of less than $38,000.

"I feel really good about 16,000 reservations," Chairman and CEO Henrik Fisker said on Monday. "I think that's pretty amazing considering as some people say there's a crowded market out there."

Fisker downplayed any concerns of delays caused by the COVID-19 pandemic or component shortages.

The company revealed that $30 million in expense guidance was earmarked for costs related to a small vehicle, dubbed Project PEAR, that was announced in February.

Fisker and Foxconn have finalized an agreement to allow the Taiwan-based electronics manufacturer to produce the sub-$30,000 EV in the United States by the end of 2023. Today, Henrik Fisker said the exterior design of the vehicle, which he told dot.LA in March would be radical and unconventional, has been completed and several key components were being sourced.

Two more models are expected to follow the second Fisker vehicle before the end of 2025, although the company hasn't said if those models would be produced with the help of Foxconn or Magna International, which has a 6% stake in the automaker.

Fisker said Sharp Corp. would develop the screens and user interfaces for production versions of the Ocean and PEAR vehicles, and potentially the other two projected cars. The deal would contribute to both the Ocean and PEAR sharing as much as 30% of their components.

Fisker reported it ended Q1 2021 with a cash balance of $985 million. The company's shares closed at $11.22, up 6.86%, but were down in after hours trading.

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