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Karma expands to commercial electrification with ‘Powered by Karma’ B2B strategy

EV manufacturer Karma Automotive announced a new Business to Business (B2B) electrification program called “Powered by Karma” to help commercial operators electrify their fleets more quickly. The additional brand designation was announced during the 2021 ACT Expo in Southern California, where the automaker is showcasing two modular electrification projects.

Karma Automotive is an American luxury EV automaker spun out of Fisker Automotive after Chinese auto-parts supplier Wanxiang Group purchased the company’s assets in 2014. This included the Fisker Karma sedan, of which the new name was derived.

In 2016, the rebranded auto manufacturer released the Revero, which is a revamped version of Fisker Karma. This was followed by the Revero GT which, will become the brand’s halo vehicle.

In 2021, Karma introduced its new GS line of EVs, including the GS-6 PHEV and all-electric GS-e6. Now, Karma Automotive is expanding outside of the world of electric passenger vehicles and looks to assist commercial fleets in speedier electrification.

Powered by Karma
Karma’s GS-6 PHEV / Source: Karma Automotive

“Powered by Karma” takes B2B approach to commercial EVs

In a recent press release, Karma Automotive announced the new name representing the automaker’s suite of engineering services and contract manufacturing solutions.

As part of its new Business to Business (B2B) offering, Karma will reveal two new modular electrification vehicle projects at the Advanced Clean Tech (ACT) Expo this week in Southern California.

With the new business venture, Karma looks to provide modular vehicle electrification to outside customers, as well as contract production services.

Furthermore, “Powered by Karma” will develop modular, commercial-grade electrification systems for Class 3-6 vehicles in various configurations. This includes electrified busses, RVs, vans, and box trucks. Karma’s CEO, Dr. Lance Zhou, spoke to the new B2B approach:

As a progressive, tech-forward company, Karma is committed to seeking out relationships with like-minded businesses that push the EV envelope. Electrification is quickly becoming the new standard for commercial and fleet vehicles, and we have vast experience in producing hybrid and pure electric propulsion systems to meet our customers’ needs.

Here are some configurations in development that the “Powered by Karma” modular electrification system will eventually be able to provide to commercial vehicles Class 3 to 6:

  • 100% Electric Drive with- standard, medium, and long-range options
  • Flexible propulsion and accessory hardware and software to power a range of Class 3-6 vehicles
  • More than 200 kW of tunable power
  • More than 1,800 Nm of torque
  • Top Speed 80 mph (speed limited)
  • 3-Mode regenerative braking
  • Optional push button start/stop functionality

Karma Automotive will be showcasing a Class 4-6 walk-in van at the 2021 ACT Expo in addition to its GS-6 PHEV. The company will also be providing ride and drives with an electrified shuttle bus outside of the convention in Long Beach.

Electrek‘s take

This is an interesting business decision by Karma Automotive. First, the automaker has struggled in recent years with revenue, and while it does have the GS-6 for sale, it has yet to deliver the fully electric version or the revamped version of its Revero GT.

To expand into B2B electrification is risky, especially in the world of commercial vehicles, of which Karma has relatively zero experience.

At the same time, converting outside customers’ fleets to electric modifications sounds a helluva lot cheaper than designing and manufacturing EVs from the ground up. It will be interesting to see how this brand designation develops and what sort of income it can bring to the rest of the company.

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Scooter Doll is a writer, designer and tech enthusiast born in Chicago and based on the West Coast. When he’s not offering the latest tech how tos or insights, he’s probably watching Chicago sports.
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