It 's as good as before, but better because it ' s cheaper. Antuan Goodwin / Roadshow
The curvy luxury plug-in hybrid Karma GS-6 2021 is essentially the same Revero GT that we drove over a year ago.Little changes to save its new name, but above all, the Karma plug-in returns with a more competitive starting price.
Karma le dit reserves the Revero GT nameplate for a future high-end variant, which is sure to confuse some buyers. Nonetheless, the new GS-6 series - which now includes the base GS-6, the more luxurious GS-6L and the sporty GS-6S - is seeing some minor revisions aimed at streamlining production and reducing the price. The GS-6 will now start at $ 85,700, including a destination charge of $ 1,800, but before any state or federal plug-in tax refunds, which is significantly lower than the previous starting price of 146,600. $.
That said, this GS -Example of 6-liter stickers at $ 114,700 still shocking with options including $ 2,000 for paint, $ 2,200 for carbon fiber trims and $ 2,400 for the improvement ofbrakes. So, yes, even the most affordable Karma price bracket is still pretty high, all things considered.
The exterior may not have changed much, but the lower price changes the Karma calculation. The automaker is hoping that the most affordable plug-in sedan will stand between premium electric brands (like Tesla and Lucid) and traditional OEMs (Mercedes-Benz and Porsche), creating a new white space in the market where the brand can grow. beyond its current niche while paving the way for the first Karma fully electric vehicle .
Extended range electric vehicle
Karma calls the GS-6 an Extended Range Electric Vehicle (or EREV), which is technically accurate. The rear wheels are driven only by a pair of electric motors.electric, one for each side, totaling 400 kilowatts, or about 536 horsepower and 550 lb-ft of torque. The GS-6S finish further increases torque to 650 lb-ft. A 28-kilowatt-hour battery mounted underground provides an estimated range of around 61 to 80 miles per charge, depending on whether you look at the EPA's own or Karma's own estimates.
At the end of those 80 miles, the GS-6 continues to roll thanks to a 170 kW range extender - the same 1.5-liter turbocharged three-cylinder engine we got found in BMW 's i8 The gasoline engine charges the battery, powers the electric motors and, yes, extends the range to a total of around 360 miles. The combustion engine does not mechanically connect to the wheels, so it is. not inaccurate to call it an electric car, but even Karma admits that this car is actually just that.'a plug-in hybrid series, a bit like the Honda Clarity PHEV , the Chevrolet Volt or the aforementioned BMW i8.
The GS-6 is one of the few plug-in hybrids that supports CCS DC fast charging. Antuan Goodwin / Roadshow
DBehind one of the GS-6's two fuel doors hides a standard SAE J1772 combination charging system connection. Plugged into a level 2 station, the GS-6 built-in 6.6 kW charger can fill the dead battery in about 4 hours. On a 45kW DC fast charging station, it can reach 90% in as little as 35 minutes. Interestingly, the Karma is one of the few PHEVs that feature high speed charging; most balance slow charging with smaller batteries or use more gasoline. The combination of fast charging and generous EV range (for a hybrid) makes it easy to use the electric half of the GS-6 equation.
As far as PHEVs go, I'm a fan of this stock setup. Combining linear and instantaneous electric torque with fast gas station refills, it is kind of the best of both worlds. In addition, the two engines allow the GS-6 to do neat stuff like simulating a limited slip differential or torque vectoring with little more than software settings, adjustable with just a tap on a screen.
On the road, the GS-6 certainly looks like a fully electric car, and sporty too. It goes almost silently from 0 to 100 km / h in 4.5 seconds (3.9 seconds for the GS-6S) with a satisfying whoosh. The long, low-slung sedan feels balanced through the corners, crashing between the contact plates of the optional 22-inch wheels - a $ 9,900 upgrade from the standard 21 - with remarkably low body roll thanks to a stance flat and a low center of mass. The steering has a good heavy setting. The brakes are smooth and consistent in their transition from electric regeneration to the massive Brembo original friction discs, even when driven by anger. Overall, the Karma is a very pleasant and lively reader.
You might not think that a vehicle that relies on regeneration would need brakes also big. Antuan Goodwin / Roadshow
However, it is not very thrifty in its gasoline modes, where you can expect an estimated EPA of 26 miles per gallon. On battery power, that climbs to around 70 miles per estimated gallon, so you'll want to keep the GS-6 charged as much as possible.ible. To put that in perspective, it's much worse than the Tesla Model S '113 mpge, but the Karma does a lot better than the Porsche Panamera E-Hybrid 's 23 mpg hybrids, 51 mpg electrics, and just 14 miles of EV range.
Unconventional paddle shifters
The GS-6s does not have a traditional transmission, but still has paddle shifters. Rather than selecting gears, these paddles switch between the Karma's three drive modes and three levels of regenerative braking. The left paddle alternates between Stealth, Sustain and Sport riding modes. The Karma will always start in fully electric Stealth mode until the battery is depleted and it goes into Sustain mode. Sustain mode still launches as an EV, but activates the generator at eAbout 25 mph to maintain the battery level. Sport mode loads the range extender more aggressively, ensuring there is plenty of power for dynamic driving.
Other than the legally required low speed warning tone, there is no artificial sound generation for hybrid drive modes. The engine is so quiet that it is often inaudible to wind and road noise. The exception is when accelerating into full-throttle Sport mode, where the 1.5-liter sometimes comes alive with the most obnoxious - and hilariously flatulent - induction noise.
The right paddle switches the three levels of regenerative braking. Level 1 rolls more freely while Level 3 is essentially a one-pedal driving mode that decelerates quite quickly when the throttle is fully up to bring the GS-6 to a complete stop, triggering the brake lights in c.road bear. Unlike the drive modes, the regeneration parameter does not reset when the car is restarted, which is good for consistent and predictable braking behavior from one trip to the next.
The renowned PHEV is cheaper, but still a very high end product with a high price tag. Antuan Goodwin / Roadshow
Interior quality, high technologyabitacle
Despite the cost saving ng changes below the surface, the interior of the GS-6L is still a very luxurious place. My example features Bridge of Weir leather, carbon fiber trim, and a high level of fit and finish. I would expect the base GS-6 to still be quite nice, but maybe not as opulent. My only complai Not about the comfortable, but comfortable seating position of the driver, is that the foot space is a bit cramped, so my shoe grazes something under the dashboard when I go. 'grab the accelerator pedal. My 5ft 9in frame fits into the rear compartment with a fair amount of knee room, although I also have to bend down to keep my head from hitting the ceiling.
The cabin technology is fairly harmless; The 10.2 inch touch screen interface is simple enough that it is difficult to navigate.lose using it. Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are standard, serving de facto as audio streaming and navigation platforms for the lacking Karma. on-board navigation or app integrations. Honestly, that's fine with me.
The touchscreen is paired with a fully digital instrument panel that is managed via capacitive controls on the steering wheel. These pads Circular thumbs are very difficult to master, partly because they are so small and generally smooth, but mostly because Karma asks them to do so much. Press incorrectly and you risk changing gauges or tilting cameras rather than just baissue the volume. What the GS-6 gains by letting me do so much while keeping my hands on the wheel, it immediately loses when I have to take my eyes off the road to use it. Next time just give me a volume button.
The range extender is fine, but the sooner Karma can get rid of it the better. Antuan Goodwin / Roadshow
The next step
Even at the most expensivebottom, the Karma GS-6 still faces the same major problem as the BMW i8 and the Polestar 1 facing him: it 'sa plug-in hybrid that must compete with the best fully electric cars at this price. It will be crossed with the link Tesla Model S , the data Lucid Air and the next E- Tron GT - all of which offer similar range without relying on gasoline.ns this optic, a car with a gas tank may seem like half a step, old news, especially for the loudest electrification enthusiasts and luxury buyers in this price range. Karma may see its flexible range extension as an advantage - and I'm inclined to agree - but for now, it's probably the detail that will keep this GS-6 in a fairly small niche.
The the fully electric GSe6 variant , which is expected to arrive later this year, cannot arrive soon enough. Roadshow
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