The future of the car industry is in electric vehicles. Almost every car making company in the world is aware of this. Many of them have showcased their EVs and related advancements in various auto shows round the globe. But Tesla Motors still stands out among all of them. First, it is not a conventional car maker converted to electric cars. It is an electric car maker since its advent.
Second, it has actually led the way for the EV industry and community all over the world with advancements that are viable and acceptable across the industry. Finally, it has got all the specs in its latest models crying out loud that Tesla has become the gold standard for the fascinating world of electric cars.
Each and every all-electric vehicle to be unveiled in the past few years has been aimed at Tesla’s current or future models.
The latest in this herd are two famous European luxury car makers, Audi and Aston Martin.
Audi’s e-tron quattro to rival Tesla’s Model X:
Audi will unveil an electric car in order to rival Tesla’s Model X, and this car is expected to travel 310 miles on every charge. It is an SUV provisionally named the ‘e-tron quattro’. The SUV will go into series production beginning in 2018 as its first mainstream electric car. It is said to be priced at about $100,000 which is a tad below Tesla’s current models.
It is designed on the technology used in Audi’s sports car, the R8 e-tron, and is a bit smaller than the company’s existing full-size SUV, the Q7. The movable elements are placed at the front and the rear of the vehicle in a bid to improve the airflow around the car and aid aerodynamics. It has a large, lithium-ion battery positioned between the axles and three electric motors, one on the front axle and two on the rear one.
What it has got in order to take on Tesla’s current and future models is its stated range of 310 miles, or 500 km, which is better than 420 km offered by the basic version of Tesla’s Model S and 300 miles expected from Model X. However, the range-topping version of the Model S that comes with a 90kWh battery can cover up to 560 km on each full charge. However, going forward, battery technology will progress and ranges will improve further. Recently, Audi has teamed up with Samsung and LG Chem to develop a battery exclusively for an all-electric SUV. The two non-automaker companies will be supplying the batteries from their European plants.
One of the negatives with Audi’s e-tron quattro is that despite being an SUV, it has space for only four people. Tesla Model X, on the other hand, has seating for up to 7 people including two child seats at the back.
Aston Martin’s 800-horsepower Rapide:
While the EV industry is getting more and more interested in the range, speed and price of EVs, Aston Martin is trying its luck by taking an aim at Tesla with an 800-horsepower electric sedan. Aston Martin CEO Andy Palmer has declared that the company will introduce an all-electric version of the Rapide model in about four years from now. The car is expected to come equipped with an all-wheel drive and possess a range of about 200 miles per charge. Aston Martin will follow it up with an electric DBX crossover model.
Pricing for the plug-in Rapide is reportedly likely to fall somewhere between $200,000 and $250,000. In comparison, Tesla’s Model S P85D starts at $105,000 and boasts a longer range of around 250 miles. Also, compare that to the Tesla Model S P90D’s starting price of about $118,000 and range of about 268 miles, it becomes clear that Aston won’t be much of a threat. The acceleration and safety features of Tesla’s models are far superior to that of Aston.
The fact that Aston lacks Tesla like aspiration for developing electric cars is obvious. Aston Martin CEO’s reasoning for developing electric cars is that, “If you want to keep making V-12 engines, then you’ve got to do something at the opposite end of the spectrum.” It’s a defensive move rather than an innovative one. On the other hand, Tesla makes EVs because it is pro EV and is the most advanced company in that direction.
All in all, Tesla is still well-positioned to retain its strong position in the EV industry as Aston is not quite serious about the market, while Audi will take time to make reasonable progress. Hence, investors should continue holding Tesla Motors since the company will continue doing well in the long run.