Now the Chinese-owned automaker has put the brakes on its sleek, luxury cars as it restructures, de-emphasizing Revero production while scaling up new technologies that will be marketed and licensed to other auto manufacturers.
The restructuring means 200 workers at Karma’s North American headquarters in Irvine are being laid off. Some 750 employees will continue working there, the company said. Additional layoffs were made at Karma’s research facility, the Detroit Technical Center, in Troy, Mich.
No job cuts are planned at the company’s assembly factory in Moreno Valley, said Dave Barthmuss, Karma’s public Relations Director. It is possible, however, that Karma at some point will partner with other companies to have their vehicles assembled there. The factory employs about 200 workers.
The job cuts in Irvine were announced at the beginning of the month, Barthmuss said:
"The company hopes to eventually hire people with different technical skills, and he said that will probably add more employees than were lost in the restructuring.
“Karma is evolving, and we will emerge as more of a technology operation. To do that, we need to adjust our resources. It’s regrettable, but it’s part of a national trajectory that startup enterprises face.”
Karma Automotive was formed in 2014 following the bankruptcy of Fisker Automotive, which created the Fisker Karma, another high-end electric hybrid vehicle. Karma is owned and fully funded by Wanxiang Group, a large auto parts supplier based in Hangzhou, China.
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