Quantum Fuel Systems Technologies, an alternative energy company, has signed a definitive supply agreement with Fisker Automotive to supply key components and control systems for the Q-Drive powertrain system that is being incorporated in the Fisker Karma.

Under the terms of the licensing and supply arrangement, Quantum will be the exclusive supplier of the Q-Drive hybrid control systems and the solar roof module. Quantum will also receive a royalty payment on each Karma sold that incorporates Quantum’s Q-Drive.

The supply agreement will also provide Quantum with the opportunity to supply components and systems for future Fisker Automotive vehicle programs, upon Quantum meeting the automaker’s performance, cost and delivery requirements.

Quantum said that its Q-Drive system takes full advantage of the performance potential of electric drive systems while achieving high fuel mileage and low emissions through its integrated plug-in hybrid electric design.

Quantum is continuing its test and validation of its Q-Drive system, under a funded development program with Fisker Automotive, with production expected to begin later this calendar year.

Fisker Automotive, closed a Department of Energy loan for $529m in April 2010. This loan will be used for the development and production of two models of plug-in hybrid EVs, including the Karma, a four-door sports sedan, and a line of family-oriented models being developed under Fisker’s Project Nina program.

Alan Niedzwiecki, president and CEO of Quantum, said: “We are quickly approaching the Karma production phase and are excited about commercializing our innovative Q-Drive PHEV control systems.

”Fisker Automotive has announced that production will begin at the end of calendar 2010 and plans on producing 15,000 Karma vehicles per year starting in calendar 2011.”