Tesla is slaying its competitors, and Phil LeBeau is telling other automakers to show what they’re made of, or stop trying to match the electric automaker’s technology and design.
Tesla is stealing the thunder of its combustion-based competitors as consumers are vying to buy electric vehicles instead of petrol-powered machines.
While legacy automakers are attempting to match Tesla’s design, technology, and performance, they continuously come up short. No car company has been able to solve the puzzle that Tesla has completed, which is to create an affordable electric car that offers both acceptable range and impressive performance. Tesla has been able to do it multiple times with several vehicles.
On an episode of Squawk Box on CNBC, Phil LeBeau gave a blunt review of what the automotive industry is doing wrong, and what they should attempt to do in the future if they plan to compete with Tesla.
“They know that they have to catch Tesla in terms of technology and in terms of the styling of the vehicle that they bring out,” LeBeau said. “For years, they have sat there and said, ‘Trust us. We’re going to come out with these vehicles.’ Well, so far, they have swung and missed, repeatedly.”
Unfortunately for the automakers who have attempted to compete with Tesla’s infrastructure, LeBeau is right. Nobody has been able to replicate or even come close to competing with Tesla’s electric vehicles. No company has been able to create a high-performance, extended-range electric car that is available at an affordable price point. Tesla is the only one.
“It is time for them to either step up or stop talking. And we’re going to find out with the GM Hummer, we’re going to find out with the electric pickup trucks coming from GM and Ford, and the other automakers,” LeBeau added.
The issue for other automakers comes down to batteries and the overall focus of their business model. While Tesla works only on electric cars, other automakers are splitting their time between more environmentally-friendly combustion vehicles and battery-electric machines.
The development of batteries is a central focus of creating an electric car that is worth a consumer’s time and money.
Instead of trying to match Tesla’s advancements in battery tech and performance specifications, automakers have been attempting to match the minimalistic design that the automaker has implemented across its vehicle fleet.
Interestingly enough, some companies continue to claim they are close to dethroning Tesla from its ranks as the leader in EV tech. GM claimed in May that it was close to a million-mile battery pack, but the details have not yet been released to the public.
Meanwhile, other car companies are singing a different tune. Volkswagen, for example, has mentioned on several occasions that Tesla holds a significant lead of 10 years in the race for the best electric car.
Either way, there are issues with the approach that other automakers are taking. Companies continue to make their primary focus combustion engines instead of attempting to increase the research and development of its future electric fleet.
“They’re saying we’ve got great tech. Show it! The time has come to show it!”
The full Squawk Box interview featuring Phil LeBeau is available below.