The current Revero uses solar panels located on its roof that can power the car's electrified powertrain. Solar panels have been seen on earlier development cars, so expect improvements to their efficiency with the 2019 model if they do continue into production.
"The energy collected from the solar panels is supplied directly to the car's high-voltage battery, which in turn powers the electric motors," Taylor explained when asked how they work on the current model. "Our solar panels are twice as powerful as the original [Fisker] ones."
While no charging time for the solar roof was revealed, Taylor suggested that strong Californian sunshine would enable owners to leave their car parked outside all day and return to it with noticeably more charge.
"We're still a long way off from being able to charge it up significantly in a few hours, but if you left your car parked in an airport car park for a couple of days, you'd see more energy," added Taylor.
The input of the sun's energy is displayed on the Revero's infotainment screen, so drivers can see when energy is being captured, even on the move.
The current Revero uses a 260bhp turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine and twin electric motor set-up, with some parts supplied by BMW. It's claimed to be capable of running in electric-only mode for up to 50 miles, but Karma is understood to be pushing for a better range in the updated model in order to satisfy even more stringent real-world tests.
As a plug-in hybrid, the Revero straddles the line between electric rivals such as the Tesla Model S and more conventional alternatives such as the Porsche Panamera. It will also compete with the upcoming Polestar 1 hybrid coupé.
Karma Automotive has been built upon the remains of Fisker Automotive, which closed for business in 2013 due to a lack of funding. With owner Wanxiang Group providing a stronger financial backing, insiders are anticipating a more productive future for the American brand.
Sam Sheehan and Lawrence Allan