2021 Fisker Ocean EV First Look: A New Sub-$40,000 Tesla Model Y Fighter
The chunky compact electric crossover will offer up to 300 miles of range
Boutique alternative-fuel carmaker Fisker has unveiled its first-ever fully electric SUV just before the 2020 CES conference in Las Vegas. The 2021 Fisker Ocean is a compact EV crossover with mass-production aspirations and an overtly environmentally conscious vibe.
The Ocean was penned by Henrik Fisker, and it's marked by the onetime BMW designer's signature wide-mouth grille. The stance is squat and girthy overall, and the model certainly looks more substantial than typical compact luxury crossovers such as BMW's X3 or Volvo's XC60. Whereas other automakers try to hide the various sensors and radar units used for adaptive cruise control, forward collision-warning systems, and the like, the Ocean features a radar sensor prominently at the peak of its nose; it's the little tablike thing below the hood ornament. Still, aside from its full-bodied shape and radar flourish, the Ocean is vaguely derivative in appearance. Combine that with how few mainstream buyers will recognize Henrik Fisker's signatures or know who or what a Fisker is, and we imagine Fisker, Inc. will need to spend plenty of time and money on marketing.
Speaking of money, while myriad details about the Ocean are still being worked out—the SUV doesn't officially go on sale until 2022—Fisker has announced a starting price: Just $37,499, and that's before relevant federal and local tax incentives are factored in. The price lives up to Fisker's sub-$40,000 target, but it applies only to Oceans that are bought. Fisker will offer several alternatives, from leasing ($2999 down, $379 per month) to user-determined ownership periods (return the car in one month or several years). Insurance will be available through a Fisker owner's app. Anyone can plunk down a $250 deposit for one, however.
An all-new electric-car platform is said to underpin the Ocean, and it will form the basis for two more EV models in the coming years. For the Ocean, that structure holds a roughly 80-kWh battery pack capable of delivering an estimated 250 to 300 miles of driving range. The entire car is claimed to be very sustainable, with a "vegan" interior that "meets stringent chemical emissions limits for various VOCs such as formaldehyde." Surfaces and materials throughout the cabin are created from recycled goods, including carpeting made from polyester clothing fibers and used plastics and rubber. Fisker even claims that the full-length solar-panel roof augments the battery's state of charge, offering up to 1000 "free" miles of electric driving per year.
Full details on the Fisker Ocean, including the automaker's ambitious mass-manufacturing goals—it seems as if the Ocean may be assembled on three continents for the American, European, and Chinese markets—will be released in the coming year. In the meantime, you can bet EV watchers will begin lining up the Ocean's statistics against those of Tesla's upcoming Model Y, which will be a direct competitor. As always with startup electric carmakers, a healthy measure of skepticism is in order. Fisker is aiming to have the Ocean in production by the end of next year and hopes to quickly ramp up to building more than one million vehicles between 2022 and 2027.