3 posts • joined Monday 9th August 2010 08:47 GMT
There's a lot of negativity here.
For starters, the DOE payback was essentially funded by all the stock shorters that ran out of time and had to bail. Sure, it's funny money, but expertly played by Musk and co. A lot of people bet against Tesla, gambled, and lost. Luckily in the case, the US government got it right.
Why are people so against innovation in the US? There's less and less thing that the West can do better than China, but building cars - electric ones at that - is potentially a massive market where the US can lead the world. Why is that a bad thing?
The Tesla business plan very clearly outlines that the GenIII model will compare to the BMW3 series and other similarly priced cars. To get to that point, the company needs to make money, and develop the technology. The Model S will be the worst car they ever make, yet, according to nearly every single review around, it's one of the best, if not THE best. Musk is making plenty of money, but his goal is to make EV's prolific, ideally with a Tesla badge on them, but not necessarily.
Disclosure: I own a Model S, an long on a very small amount of stock, am not rich, am not a tree-hugger, and am a Brit living in the US.
There's a lot of EV haters, but it's important to remember a few things, if you can get past the weird publishing schedules that US magazines have.
1. Cars over here are not efficient, typically. Sure, I'm in Texas, so my baseline is not the same as California for example, but if something gets more than 15mpg here, it's a good deal. Having a car that goes like stink, has a rating of 89mpg and range comparable with many cars (i.e. M5) is still an amazing design feat.
2. Tesla has a loan from the DoE. A loan, by definition, will be paid back. Musk has confirmed this. The amount was trivial compared to the money invested by the US government in GM.
3. The Model S, in the Performance guise, is in the same price range as an M5, S7, E63 AMG etc etc. Sure, it's not a car for everyone, but it's priced comparably. The GenIII model, which is currently in development, is expected to be a 3-Series class car. This is new technology. It's not cheap. It'll become cheap through mass adoption. give it time.
4. It's not a 'vanity project'. Musk invested huge amounts of his personal wealth to keep the company going a couple of years ago. Is SpaceX also a vanity project? These are all high-tech, high-glamour projects, but that doesn't make them any less significant.
I've felt the pain
A year into the migration to UC, we still have very significant technical issues that the Vendor (one of the big ones), and user adoption has dropped from an initial 'high' of ~50% to less than 20%. Nevertheless, we're about to deploy the solution to the rest of our offices, in the hope that the vendor will get it's act together.