destino-1Last week the Federal government put the remains of Fisker Automotive on the auction block, seeking to recover some of the $193 million it loaned the green automaker before the company went bankrupt. Rumor has it that a Hong Kong billionaire has picked up what is left of Fisker for a cool $30 million, though the future of Fisker itself remains in doubt.

destino-2That has dimmed the spirits of former GM exec Bob Lutz, who Automotive News says plans to replace the Fisker’s hybrid drivetrain with one of two GM-sourced V8 engines for 2014.

Lutz, who has openly said he is a fan of the Fisker’s look, if not its drivetrain, said that his company, VL Automotive, has purchased 25 unsold Fisker Karmas and settled a dispute with an Asian investor over infotainment system programming codes that had so far prevented the conversion of Fiskers into V8-powered Destinos. With the codes in hand, Lutz and company can move forward with plans to convert the Fiskers.

With a more-conservative front fascia and the option of either the 455 horsepower LT1 from the new Corvette Stingray, or the 638 horsepower LS9 from the previous-generation Corvette ZR1, the Destino conversions are going to be costly. In fact, it will about double the price of the Fisker Karma, with each conversion of the $100,000 hybrid costing another $100,000. Lutz says completed cars will go for $200,000 each, making the already-expensive Fisker even more expensive.

But it will also be faster, meaner, and have an easier-to-modify drivetrain that could give second life to a beautiful, if flawed, driving machine.