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Fisker Karma hybrid combusts, spontaneously

In Woodside, Calif., the owner of a Fisker Karma hybrid pops into the grocery store. When she emerges again, her car, ma, has gone south and her Karma is in flames.

Woody77atgmail/YouTube Screenshot: Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

Sometimes, things just blow up.

It happens to iPhones, so why shouldn't it happen to lovely, shiny hybrid cars?

I am grateful to Jalopnik, which discovered that a lovely Fisker Karma is slightly less lovely today, after it appears to have set itself alight.

I don't think it was a protest against continued ignorance of global warming, though local fire crew in Woodside, Calif., are currently mystified as to why the Fisker lost its karma and simply flambeed.

No one appears to have been hurt in this incident, which occurred when the owner went into a local grocery store and emerged a while later to discover that she might have to walk home.

A little local sleuthing suggests that the owner might be a film consultant, whose husband might work for a venture capital company.

The geography of Woodside is quite fortunate, as Robert's Market -- outside which the fire took place -- is but a few hundred yards from the local fire station.

This is not the first incendiary incident involving the Fisker Karma this year. In May, a Karma sedan seems to have been the "origin" of a house fire in Texas.

In this case, the battery was not deemed to be either the origin or the cause of the fire.

I have tried to contact Fisker to see whether the company has any initial instincts and will return with an update should my phone lines burn with a reply.

In the heart of Silicon Valley, progress often takes a step forward, a step back and a couple of steps sideways, before taking another forward pace.

One can only hope that such a beautiful car continues to have a beautiful future.

Here's what an unburned one looks like. Fisker Automotive