In a March press launch, Fisker Automotive mentioned it had surpassed 40,000 reservations for its Ocean SUV and would “open pre-order reservations for the limited-edition Fisker Ocean One on July 1, 2022, as a consequence of anticipated demand.” Later in the identical launch, CEO Henrik Fisker mentioned, “Our objective is to be utterly clear with our prospects. … We don’t need reservation holders who count on to buy a Fisker Ocean One to be disenchanted, so we’re offering them now with the chance to safe their car.” These anticipating the prospect to purchase an Ocean One won’t have been disenchanted by the e-mail Fisker despatched this week, however they actually would have been shocked. As reported by Electrek, seems the supply of “pre-order reservations” was truly an invite to pay a $5,000 nonrefundable downpayment for an Ocean One. As in, this is not a reservation, that is the start of the acquisition course of, and a change of coronary heart will not get the cash again.
We have to make three issues clear. First, this solely applies to the limited-edition, $69,000 Ocean One. Buyers within the serial manufacturing Ocean are high-quality with their $250 deposit. Second, Fisker is not the primary EV maker to ask a wholesome four-figure deposit. When Lucid unveiled the manufacturing model of the Air, it took reservations from $300 to $7,5000 relying on trim. After all, the important thing distinction is that every one of Lucid’s reservations have been refundable. Third, it isn’t like there aren’t hundreds of individuals shopping for vehicles sight-unseen these days. GMC Hummer EV and Ford F-150 Lightning consumers reserved, then paid for, then laid eyes on their rigs. And between the herds of automotive flippers and customers simply attempting to get the brand new car they need, of us usually are not solely shopping for sight unseen on-line, they’re driving lots of of miles to do it.
With that out of the best way, for instance we nonetheless assume that is an, ahem, gutsy transfer on Fisker’s half. Established automakers with a century of manufacturing information and gold-plated provider relationships cannot get autos inbuilt a well timed method. Nascent EV makers just like the aforementioned Lucid, in addition to Rivian, usually tend to announce manufacturing cuts or delays than a manufacturing milestone. Working example, Fisker deliberate to have its contracted Ocean builder, Magna, working the Ocean down strains on the finish of final 12 months. Manufacturing stays on observe for November of this 12 months, however each automaker has plans till the provision chain and chip scarcity punches these plans within the mouth. Between the worldwide industrial state of affairs and Fisker’s considerably shaky historical past, throwing $5,000 at an Ocean makes essentially the most sense as a tax writeoff, and hey, if and when a purchaser will get an Ocean One finally, that is a bonus.
A word on that “when” half, the letter mentioned Fisker aimed to have all Ocean Ones delivered by September 2023. Henrik Fisker instructed Fiskerati that the highest Excessive trim “will begin manufacturing alongside [the] One.” These two fashions have the identical MSRP. After that, he mentioned “the Extremely and Sport will begin manufacturing on the finish of Q3 subsequent 12 months.” The corporate mentioned it did not count on to boost costs all through 2023 manufacturing, nevertheless it could not assure value stability for these getting in line after 40,000 reservations had been made. By placing the entry-level Sport on the finish of the meeting queue — a typical transfer on this cash-hungry enterprise — value bumps for individuals who haven’t got reservations but appear sure. However let’s get to November first and see what occurs.