There’s no debate about the massive threat to the auto industry that Tesla is. It’s completely gone against the grain, which has disrupted the rest of the industry to say the least. Most German automakers won’t publicly admit that, though. In fact, most German execs will tell you that Tesla’s advantage is exaggerated and potentially even non-existent. However, Audi seems to feel otherwise.
According to Audi CEO Markus Duesmann, Tesla does have an EV advantage in the marketplace and one that Audi will have to catch up to.
“Currently, Tesla has larger batteries because their cars are built around the batteries. Tesla is two years ahead in terms of computing and software architecture, and in autonomous driving as well,” said Duesmann in a recent interview.
A two-year advantage is a significant one and one that the rest of the industry will have to work hard to overcome. If any brand is primed to do so, though, it’s Audi. Not only does it already have several new EVs hitting the market but it’s backed by the engineering might of the Volkswagen Group.
All of Audi’s upcoming electric cars will be built on bespoke EV chassis moving forward. For instance, the Audi Q4 e-tron siblings will both be based on the VW Group’s MEB all-electric architecture and the e-tron GT is based on the J1 platform, which is also a bespoke EV platform that also underpins the Porsche Taycan. There will be more on the way, too, and we’re extremely excited to see the EVs Audi has in store.
Audi is also going to have to bank on those EVs to sustain some profitability after a really down year due to the Coronavirus.
“We certainly expect the coronavirus crisis to have longer-term effects,” Duesmann told Handelsblatt in the interview. “We have had a very difficult second quarter. Things are slowly picking up, but not as a ‘sharp V’ as one would wish for,” he continued.
So don’t listen to any execs that say Tesla doesn’t have an advantage at the moment because it absolutely does. Hopefully Audi can overcome it.
[Source: Auto News Europe]