Tesla’s Model S may very well go down as one of the most important and
impactful cars in history. Not only did it enjoy a seemingly endless number
of accolades and awards, it single-handedly kickstarted the EV revolution
into high gear. Though EVs have been around for literally decades, the
success Tesla enjoyed with the Model S ultimately prompted traditional
automakers like Ford and BMW to take EV development much more seriously.
Porsche in particular has been heavily influenced by Tesla’s success. Back
in 2015, the luxury automaker announced the Mission E, a fully electric car
with some pretty impressive specs. With a base price of $85,000, Porsche
last month said that the entry-level Mission E will sport 310 miles of range
and a 0-60 time of 3.5 seconds. And if all goes according to plan, the
Mission E will be available for purchase by 2019.
While some auto executives seem to relish thrashing Tesla at every turn,
Porsche, in stark contrast, has been more complimentary and respectful of
the company’s ongoing success. If anything, Porsche’s respect for Tesla
underscores the automaker’s fierce determination and motivation to compete
in the EV space.
Recently, Porsche Cars North America CEO Klaus Zellmer went so far as to say
that Tesla vehicles have likely drawn away users who may have otherwise
purchased a Porsche.
“We have lots of respect for Tesla – and, yes, I’m sure there are some
Porsche customers, that in terms of connectivity, digital stuff in the car
and electric battery in the vehicles, didn’t find the car that they wanted
with Porsche so they bought somewhere else,” Zellmer said in an interview on
CNBC this week.