When hundreds of Fisker Karma plug-in hybrids sitting at Port Newark were destroyed by a flood of seawater during Superstorm Sandy, it was clearly an "act of God," in the parlance of the legal profession. But the reason those Karmas were there in the first place, and not delivered to happy customers is a bit more mundane.
Turns out, the Karmas were waiting at the port because they needed their cooling fans replaced. You remember the cooling fans, the ones that caused Fisker's voluntary recall back in August, right? They are why, apparently, the Karmas were sitting instead of out on the roads. Jalopnik ferreted out this little detail in the court documents:
Fisker's senior director of global corporate communications & PR, Roger Ormisher, sent AutoblogGreen the following statement:
Although more than 900 other Fisker vehicles from the same ocean shipments previously had been transshipped to inland conveyances through FAPS, the 338 vehicles remaining in port were delayed to address various service requirements. All or virtually all of the vehicles were subject to a safety recall requiring the replacement of cooling fans before they could be distributed lawfully to retail dealerships. In addition, some of the vehicles required replacement of lithium ion batteries and software updates. These requirements resulted in delays of varying lengths in transshipping the vehicles to dealers via domestic conveyances.
Fisker lost 338 vehicles in the flooding at Port Newark caused by Superstorm Sandy. Fisker has a property insurance policy with XL Insurance America (XL) and, obviously, believes that XL is obligated to cover this loss under the policy that Fisker purchased from XL. Fisker attempted in good faith to resolve its claim directly with XL but has been frustrated and disappointed by XL's denial of coverage. As a result, Fisker determined that it was, unfortunately, necessary to file a lawsuit in order to resolve this matter. Fisker is confident that it will ultimately receive adequate compensation from XL for this loss
As suggested, the vehicles, as is commonly known, had to have cooling fans replaced as part of the recall that we were doing and also all have software upgrades to current specification performed at port. We also ship from Valmet in larger shipments at a time as that is more economically viable.