Karma Revero plug-in isn't very efficient, EPA says

You'll actually spend more on gas each year than the average new car.

Nick Miotke/Roadshow

When you spend more than $120,000 on a plug-in hybrid, you'd expect it to be pretty darn efficient, right? Eh, not so much with the Karma Revero.

According to the EPA, the Karma Revero plug-in hybrid is actually pretty inefficient. Overall, it earns 60 MPGe, with its gas engine alone rated at 20 mpg. The feds estimate that its battery should provide for 37 miles of charge, and with a full tank of gas, the total range is just 240 miles.

In a vacuum, those numbers might sound fine, but they're not great. In fact, its gas engine receives the same mpg rating as the 2012 Fisker Karma off which the Revero is based. Its battery only gained 4 miles of range over the last five years. The 2012 Fisker Karma was rated at 54 MPGe when it was first tested.

In fact, the EPA estimates that a Karma Revero will slurp up $500 more in fuel costs over five years than the average new car with a gas engine alone. Sure, expensive cars are traditionally thirstier than your average new car, but it's important to remember this is a hybrid and not some 700-horsepower track behemoth. And with a 10-gallon gas tank, you'll be taking your Revero to the gas station relatively often if can't run it on electricity alone.

It gets worse when you compare it to other new plug-in hybrids. InsideEVs did some research, and the Revero is the only 2018 plug-in with an five-year fuel cost above the average new car. Every other plug-in, from the Toyota Prius Prime to the Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid, either saves buyers money or is just as efficient as the average gas car.

While the Karma Revero might look nearly exactly the same as the Fisker Karma on which it's based, there's still a whole bunch of new stuff inside. Karma improved on its interior noise mitigation, and there's a new 10.2-inch touchscreen infotainment system. Thanks to its electric motors, its output is a healthy 403 horsepower and 981 pound-feet of torque. But it's a heavy brute, weighing about 5,400 pounds, so arriving at 60 mph takes a leisurely 5.4 seconds.

Update, 3:09 p.m.: The average fuel cost mentioned in the text is over the first five years, not the first year alone, as it was originally published.

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