edatoakrun wrote:GRA wrote:...Whether or not Tesla itself survives as a company and manages to introduce mass market cars, mass market BEVs undoubtedly will arrive, largely thanks to them demonstrating what could be done.
TSLA has never built any "mass market BEVs", as defined by relatively high production levels and low price, and may never build any.
I am one of millions of drivers world-wide who actually do drive "mass-market BEVs", in my case since early 2011.
I doubt the large majority of those who drive BEVS were significantly influenced by TSLA, even if they, like many misguided ICEV drivers, see some achievement in TSLA's failures.
I don't see how it is possible find any plausible rational counterfactual argument that the billions of dollars flushed down TSLA these many years could not have been far more productively invested in BEV production, under more competent management.
Which management would that be, since no one else has managed to produce a compelling BEV salable outside the limited market of BEV enthusiasts (without subsidies, that is)? As I said, whether or not Tesla will build the first mass market BEV remains unclear, but someone will because Tesla has
1. Eliminated for all time the canard about BEVs being "nothing more than glorified golf carts"
2. Taken significant business from the likes of BMW, Mercedes, Audi, Porsche etc., so they can't dismiss them as being niche cars, and have to compete.
3. Showed how and then built a charging infrastructure that makes BEVs usable for shorter trips (if still well short of what's needed to fully compete with liquid fuels on longer ones).
None of this assures or even requires that Tesla be the company which achieves the first mass market car, or even that they survive, but it does ensure, along with the move to ban non-ZEVs from many cities or countries past a certain date, that mass market BEVs will arrive. Neither the LEAF or Volt has had as much impact on the non-enthusiast public, and I suspect looking back the Model S will be judged to be the most significant car of the first quarter of this century if not longer (I'd say the Prius was the most significant one for the first decade). Next to that, a few billion down the tubes, if it comes to that, just isn't that important (except to the investors).