If the legal battle between Tesla Motors and design firm Fisker Automotive wasn’t shocking enough, Fisker’s CEO, Henrik Fisker, effectively threw a battery onto the fire.; Earlier today, the firm launched a countersuit against Tesla’s accusations of industrial espionage.
The battle started shortly after Fisker debuted its Karma concept at the 2008 Detroit auto show, announcing the plug-in hybrid sedan would go on sale in 2009.; The car certainly looked good in both blue and white hues, but the powers at Tesla only saw red.
Fisker, it seems, had been hired by Tesla to style an electric sedan project, codenamed WhiteStar.; Tesla’s lawsuit, filed last month, alleged the design firm produced a subpar design while stealing proprietary battery and motor technology for use in the Karma.; What that technology may be is still uncertain; company representatives only refer to the Karma’s powertrain – called Q-Drive – as being of a proprietary design.
Fisker’s countersuit alleges Tesla’s accusations are "ridiculous," citing the entire suit as means to pull the wool over problems encountered with the firm’s first electric vehicle, the Roadster.; Deliveries of the two-seat speedster, built in part by Lotus Cars, are currently running months behind schedule.
Fisker also claims Tesla’s unhappiness with the produced design was in part due to drastic changes in the WhiteStar’s packaging.; As a result, the entire concept was "morphed" from Tesla’s original vision.
In regards to the whole quagmire, CEO Fisker says the situation amounts to nothing more than a petty spat.
"It’s just sour grapes," he told CNET.; "That’s all I can make out of it."