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Karma, Pininfarina Partner on Product Development


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California-based Karma Automotive LLC says it is teaming up with Italian design and engineering firm Pininfarina SpA on unspecified future projects.

The relationship is expected to speed product development efforts and bring advanced mobility technologies to market faster. Karma CEO Lance Zhou says the companies already have started working together and plan to unveil their first joint project by this summer.

Pininfarina’s design expertise will help Karma accelerate product development, differentiation and personalized customization, Zhou tells attendees at this week’s Automotive News World Congress in Detroit. The alliance also aims to help Karma gain access to the European market and Pininfarina expand its U.S. operations. The Italian company opened a design studio in California in 2018.

Earlier this year Karma announced plans to form partnerships to develop artificial intelligence, connectivity and shared mobility products.

Karma, rescued from bankruptcy four years ago by China’s Wanxiang Group, launched its hybrid Revero sport sedan in 2017. That car is an updated version of the stylish Karma model developed by the former Fisker Automotive Inc. Founder Henrik Fisker launched a rival EV company, Fisker Inc., in 2016.

India’s Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd. purchased Pininfarina in late 2015. Last year, the companies formed a separate company, Automobili Pininfarina, that is developing its own high-powered EV. Dubbed the Battista, the 1,900-hp Pininfarina model is due next year.

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