In a world where battery size, range and efficiency trump horsepower, performance and dynamics, automakers aren’t boasting engine size any longer but electric range. Times are a changin’. But in this electrified time, the auto industry is more cutthroat than ever because each automaker is pushing to be a pioneer in the inevitable electric future, so it’s not likely that one automaker would compliment another. Which makes it so strange that an executive from Audi just recently praised Tesla, even if it was somewhat reluctantly, on the job the Silicon Valley brand has done.
“I hate to admit it, but Tesla did everything right” said Stefan Niemand, Audi’s Electric Mobility Chief.
Mainly, Neimand was talking about Tesla’s Supercharger infrastructure, which is expanding across the glob at an alarming rate. Audi is currently in the process of making an electric car that can easily compete, and maybe even trump, any current Tesla product, the e-tron Quattro Concept, that boasts an electric range of 500 kn (310 miles). So making a successful electric car isn’t all that difficult for Audi, but having a successful charging infrastructure is. Very difficult. And that’s exactly what Tesla has done so well.
However, Tesla isn’t the only company working on fast-charging infrastructure, as Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz are working on getting a sort of fast-charging network in Germany and eventually Europe. If Audi can follow Tesla’s model of how to get such a network developed quickly, it’s possible that it, as well as the other Germans, can catch up to Tesla. But until then, according to Audi, Tesla is the company that’s doing it right.