Detroit-based automaker VL Automotive, backed by former General Motors vice chairman Bob Lutz, has announced its plans to go ahead with the production of the Destino, a Fisker Karma-based vehicle with its earth friendly hybrid bits swapped out in favor of some ZR1 Corvette power.
Lutz told the Automotive News that the company has purchased 25 unsold Karma’s after settling a dispute with an Asian investor over accessing the codes for operating the Karma’s infotainment system.
The Destino will rid of the gasoline-electric powertrain in favor of either a 638 horsepower supercharged LS9 engine from the Corvette ZR-1, or the 450 horsepower LT1 V8 from the 2014 Corvette Stingray.
Lutz said the challenge engineers face with the Destino is creating a refined driving experience. At $200,000, Destino customers will expect nothing less.
“It’s going to take time. I don’t want a rough car that’s hard to drive with a bad transmission and high noise levels. At close to $200,000, these things are going to have to be silky and buttery to drive. The sound and feel have to be just right,” Lutz told the Automotive News.
VL is also planning to offer the V8 treatment to current Karma owners for about $100,000, around what a Karma costs new.
VL, who displayed two Destino’s at this past North American International Auto Show in Detroit, plans to return to the show this year with a Destino and one other body style, Lutz told Automotive News. Deliveries of the VL Destino are expected to start by mid-2014.