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This new SUV shows how car companies can't compete against Tesla

Discussion in 'News' started by S'toon, Aug 21, 2015.

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  1. ev-now

    ev-now Member

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    Indeed AND they previously announced 2017, but obviously feel comfortable slipping their vaporware competitor as the X is slightly delayed - what a crock from Audi (a company who I have previously respected having had the fun of the 'original' Quattro Coupe in the 80's, as well as later Audis)!

    The Mercedes 'news' is more of the same - "in the future we will release a vehicle which competes with the vehicle Tesla is about to release, of course it will go as far or farther, it will have a new untested drive-train which will be better and Tesla won't come up with a response to competitors or change their game in the next 3 years ...", well we better all hold our and see what Musk can possibly do to respond to this imminent threat.

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    That is Audi is not a design, it's an artist's impressions and few end up as slick or indeed sleek in real life, and this one is far from sleek IMHO.

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    Good points, but the auto-industry might be repeating the mistakes of the watch and camera industries when faced with crystal timing-keeping and digital images respectively. The swiss watch manufacturers got caned by the Japanese for a long time before managing to rebuild significantly (once they'd been rolled up in a few well timed and very affordable acquisitions, and Kodak and others floundered while Canon and Nikon grabbed the opportunity). My point is that the bravest companies survive by adopting the new BEFORE it is mainstream, because if they wait that long - they will only ever share their market with everyone else who watched, and waited. Cannibalizing your current revenue streams for a near certain future is a matter of timing only.
     
  2. Spidy

    Spidy Active Member

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    Do you know how these people drive in Germany? Left lane of on the Autobahn and at the limit all the time. Cars with the top engines, because the company pays for it. I mean even interns drive around like that...
     
  3. nathanharman

    nathanharman Member

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    So the model X will have 3 years (at least) before the e-tron is on the market - it hard to see this as being anything else than a catch-up attempt. On the plus side hopefully Audi will use the Tesla supercharger network and thus help fund its further growth.
     
  4. Vexar

    Vexar Member

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    I've never met you or seen you, but one ergonomic question: how was the head room for you?
     
  5. MSEV

    MSEV Member

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    I prefer the Tesla.

    But more importantly, which ever picture your prefer,
    One is a picture, the other is a car in production (or will be in a month or so).
    Huge difference.
     
  6. artsci

    artsci Sponsor

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    There's no accounting for taste:)
     
  7. Merrill

    Merrill Active Member

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    This is a great thread, and I will add to everyone has said. No body looks at the future, if you do a 10 year cost of ownership with a Model S the savings can be as much as $35000, depending how much you drive. This will vary based on what ICE you drive and fuel costs. My model 60 was around $82000 not including tax and license. So now you are down below $50,000 and as roblab said many have paid this much for a car. The day that I'm waiting for is the Model 3, this will be a game changer and all the other manufactures will have to join the parade. After all the consumers dictate what will be marketed and if they want all electric they will buy all electric assuming it meets their needs.
     
  8. wdolson

    wdolson Supporting Member

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    Covering several messages in one here...

    No children here and I don't have solar panels, but I agree. We do have the cheapest electricity in the US ($0.08) and it's from the hydro plant just up the road. If I stay at the level of driving I do now, it will take me around 30 years to pay for the difference. Though I expect we'll be taking the Tesla more to run errands and we have talked about taking more trips. Right now whenever we go out together to run errands we almost always take my SO's car. She doesn't like my Buick and her car does get better gas mileage.

    I was already getting bumped up market in the ICE world because I wasn't finding much that worked in the $30K - $40K range. When I started looking at Tesla, I had already started thinking around $50K. My SO had some property in Oregon she has been talking about selling for a couple of years. She's exited enough about the Tesla she's talking about getting it sold so we can get the car sooner.

    The worry of every bean counter in every company is what if we invest in the next technology and it doesn't happen? Some people were saying the future was BEVs when the EV1 was on the streets of California only to see them all round up and crushed. Nobody did anything with BEVs for another 6-7 years. In other industries there have been misfires that went nowhere and stayed nowhere. The old hands are frequently quick to say any up and coming technology is just a fad, and sometimes they are right. Sometimes technologies take a lot longer to take hold that originally expected. I think BEVs are finally here to stay, but it's still early in the revolution. Tablet computers had been around in small numbers since the 90s, but they never caught on until Apple made one. A lot of companies had spent a lot of R&D money trying to make tablets that consumers wanted before the iPad.

    My father was a commercial photographer, but his work started drying up in the mid-80s as his contacts in the ad agencies started retiring. He wanted to keep working (and worked until his mid-80s) so my parents expanded a sideline they had had for a while to sell photo supplies to professional photographers. They had a direct dealership with Kodak (the only one in Central California) and my father got to know quite a few people in the company. The R&D people actually did see the handwriting on the wall early on, and they developed a line of batteries and cards for digital cameras as well as their own line of digital cameras. The problem was the company's entire structure was built around a large volume product. Film cameras have a long logistics tail between the film, the chemicals to process it, and the photographic paper to print it on. Digital has small to non-existent logistics tail. There was just no need for a big company to serve just the digital photographic needs. Most of the companies that survived in the shake out are either companies that also do something else or made photography hardware to begin with like Nikon, which still sells cameras and camera accessories.

    I just watched a documentary called Pump which is about automotive fuels. They touched on BEVs (and if you didn't know anything about the BEV market you'd be left with the impression Tesla was the only BEV out there), but they also talked about the massive changes that have to take place to replace liquid fuel burning cars. Right now BEVs are only 0.1% of the market. That niche was growing at something like 50% a year there for a little while, though this year appears to be down because the price of gas dropped. Even when the Model 3 is in full production at 500,000 cars a year, that's still smaller production than the numbers for smallest company selling mainstream cars in the US (mass produced cars as opposed to limited production exotics) which is Subaru.

    Subaru today makes about 900,000 cars a year. And that's the smallest. Mazda, Kia, Hyundai, Nissan, and all those other car makers you see on TV all make more than 1 million cars a year. Tesla may get big enough to produce as many cars as some of the smaller mainstream car makers by 2030, but they won't be able to produce enough cars to challenge the biggest: Toyota, VW, and GM for at least a few decades. The big companies are sitting back and playing a wait and see game while dabbling with alternatives such as the Audi concept but most of the alternative attention is on hybrids because they can still make a lot of money on them.

    Headroom is not usually a problem, I'm only 6'2" which is average for a caucasian guy these days.

    The leg problem is made worse by my tailbone which I broke when I was a kid. If my thighs aren't straight on a long trip, my tailbone starts to hurt and it seems to stimulate the sciatic nerve. I've tried those pillows with the cutout for the tailbone and it helps a bit, but there is still some pressure if my thighs aren't straight. I can drive for an hour or so without my thighs straight, it's long trips that kill me. When I did try the tailbone cushion in my SO's car on a long trip (she uses one all the time), it did push me a bit too close to the headliner. I wasn't touching it, but my hair was brushing against it and it felt like I had a bug in my hair.

    I haven't been able to arrange a test drive at the Portland Tesla store yet (they have no weekend appointments and it's on the opposite corner of the metro area from us), a forum member who lives close did give me a test drive (we have awesome people here!). I was pleased that the driver's seat in the Model S actually went back a little too far! I have only come across one other sedan that did that.
     
  9. FlatSix911

    FlatSix911 Porsche 918 Hybrid

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    Both are artist renderings until the Model X arrives in September.

    The Audi is arguably better designed, both interior and exterior. Porsche has both beat hands down.
     
  10. dhanson865

    dhanson865 Active Member

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    That Audi rendering looks like it has 25" wheels and an rather small fender area.

    I'd rather have something with 18" wheels* and top of class crash safety.

    * I know Tesla is using 19" and 21" wheels right now. I'd like to see smaller wheels on future vehicles. Heck I'm fine with 15" wheels on smaller cars so I'm sure I wouldn't mind the look of smaller wheels on a Model S, X, or 3. I want the ability to buy more common tire sizes and the advantage of less unsprung mass.
     
  11. Brick_top

    Brick_top Member

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    Interesting how much taste differs from person to person.

    Personally I think this Audi design looks really unproportinate. But I like some aspects of the design. But I think the Tesla Image is really balanced and nice. I'm not quite liking the X mules I have been seing in pictures.
     
  12. Larry93428

    Larry93428 Member

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    The Audi design reminds me of those great locomotives of the thirties, "The Century Limited" or such. It must be the large wheels and small windows.
    ~Larry
     
  13. brucet999

    brucet999 Active Member

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    Even a classy ride like this Hudson? :)

    53_Hudson_Profile.jpg
     
  14. Matias

    Matias Active Member

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  15. Vexar

    Vexar Member

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    I sincerely hope for the best for you. Strength, flexibility and balance is probably your best cure there. I know you said the rainy city of Portland, and this may not initially make sense, but if you're sitting on one of those special cushions, you may want to consider the added cost of the panoramic roof on the Model S. Perhaps the Model X will have a touch more.

    Broken tailbone is why I opted never to learn to skateboard. So much for it being a "vestigal organ" as taught in American schools in the 80's. I had one bad fall on a skateboard trying it once and said to myself it wasn't very safe to learn. Of course in reflection, I've been pursuing tightrope walking for almost five years now. I go back to my strength, flexibility, and balance comment with that one. I had back surgery and it led to circus arts to maintain my body. I ended up with back problems by spending too much time on an Airbus 319 or an office chair.

    Make sure you get the seat heater option; it really helps in some situations with your lower back. See you @ a Supercharger someday!
     
  16. Panoz

    Panoz Member

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    @BangorBob - excellent comments about automotive innovations and what a current ICE manufacturer would need to do to change direction.

    In short, after reading all this excellent commentary, I see ONLY Tesla as the only disruptive technology in automobiles that's likely to happen. It took a billionaire to get it going, it darn near died with the Roadster, before it happened, and it took a man with a vision to fight off all the naysayers.

    Given the cost and legalities of actually starting a car company in the USA, who else is going to even attempt it? And will the existing car companies gamble everything on a complete departure of their existing skills and knowledge to go to electric vehicles? Their dealers don't want them to, no money in maintenance. The gov't doesn' want them to, no tax revenue from gasoline sales. There is NO OTHER incentive other than Tesla to go electric, and only Nissan has tried it on a large scale. New EVs *must* come from the large manufacturers, and the only stand-alone company pushing the tech is Tesla.
     
  17. S'toon

    S'toon Knows where his towel is

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    Audi is probably in European testing cycle.
     
  18. wdolson

    wdolson Supporting Member

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    I'm usually OK when not taking long road trips. My back overall is in better shape than most guys I know. Other than the tailbone and some tendency for my neck to go out of alignment it's generally pretty good.

    The one Tesla I've been in had the pano roof. I need to sit in one without pano roof to see what the headroom is like. The pano roof is on the list for consideration. I'm also thinking about the next generation seats which I've heard are very comfortable on a long trip. I believe front seat heaters are now standard on the Model S but back seat heaters are part of the winter package.

    I've thought a bit about the Model X, but I think they are going to be more expensive than the Model S and I would prefer a sedan. I'd also want to know if the back seats were removable. We would never use the third row and only infrequently need the second row. In my SO's Impreza, the back seats are folded down 90% of the time. I'd probably leave the back seats folded down in the Model S most of the time too.

    We have talked about doing some trips once we get the Tesla. I'm looking forward to "free gas" on the road. We haven't planned anything further east than New Mexico (my SO has wanted to go to Santa Fe for many years and we've never managed to get there), but who knows where we'll go.
     
  19. 3mp_kwh

    3mp_kwh Active Member

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    And the now just got "nower" with <$40 oil, the end of the driving season and dare we discuss possible $1.XX / gallon gas? EV loyalty is one thing, but the switch customer is also a harder commodity to capture, right now. At least with Tesla, it isn't so much about gas prices.
     
  20. Bangor Bob

    Bangor Bob Member

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