Frankfurt Motor Show: Fisker Surf

Fisker describes the Surf as an "electric luxury/sports automobile for an active and eco-friendly lifestyle" that is a "crossover between a sports car and a station wagon".

That makes it a posh, electric estate car of sorts, and it is the second model in the American company's range after the long-awaited and yet to arrive Karma saloon.
Like the Karma, it uses a pair of electric motors to power the rear wheels, and takes its power from a Lithium-iron-phosphate battery sat in the central tunnel.

It backs up the power of this battery by shoving a 256bhp turbocharged petrol engine into the mix as well, but purely to act as a generator for when the batteries need a little extra help.

The Surf comes with two different modes, Sport, and the brilliantly named Stealth that is aimed at saving fuel, not at launching covert attacks on enemy lines.

It is a rapid little thing though, with 60mph coming in 7.9 seconds in the eco mode, and 5.9 seconds in the Sport mode. The top speed is electronically limited in both modes as well, with Sport letting you get to 125mph, while Stealth steps in and stops the fun at 95mph.

All this spirited driving will limit your electric range naturally, but drive normally and the Surf will make it about 50 miles under normal power, and then it relies on the 36 litre fuel tank to boost the total range to 300 miles.

To replenish the lost electricity without using the engine, the Surf can be plugged in and recharged in six hours using European plug sockets.

The Surf is not a parsimonious looking eco car though, and it comes with staggeringly massive 22-inch wheels as standard. It is just a shame the rest of it is a bit, well, awkward looking.

Expect the Surf to make it on sale in 2013, if Fisker's prediction proves accurate.
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