If mercedes and toyota try to kill tesla?

If mercedes and toyota try to kill tesla?

Is it possible for mercedes, toyota or any interested (fuel) company or governement to kill tesla?

Mark Petersen | 1 februari 2011

lol, well yes

if they pay the mafia a ton of money to blow them up
bribe government official to haress them 24/7
find some patten violation and sue them for a bilion $
change the law, to add extra tax on EV's
hack teslas network and plant a bug in the car that will cause the battery to catch fire
bye all the stock and then close the company (legal but very expensive)

well there is plenty of ways to do it, but 99.999% of them are unrealistic

qwk | 1 februari 2011

Unless the government did it, it's not possible.

The government loan has a clause in it. Elon has to own a certain percentage of shares for the duration of the loan.

joesontesla | 1 februari 2011

@qwk space x is a good argument when you have problems :)

Vawlkus | 3 februari 2011

There are ways, some legal, a few not.

Go watch "Who killed the Electric Car" if you want a list of how it was done last time.

Timo | 3 februari 2011

At that point Big Oil needed to fight only one front with an opponent that didn't want to fight back. Easy.

Now it would require fighting in couple of thousand fronts with opponents that don't need to do anything to fight back in order to win, because technology is finally here to make ICE obsolete.

This time fight is Oil Industry (ICE cars) against Power Industry (future electricity sales = BEV) & Electronics (IT mainly) industry (Batteries = B in BEV). Everybody can see which one wins this time.

Change can't be stopped any more, only slightly slowed.

Big Oil has been hit by double-blow: General public is now better aware of environmental issues caused by pollution, and BEV has reached a point where it is competitive with ICEV in price, performance and range. From now on it only gets worse for Big Oil, there is no turning back clock to crush tech upgrades.

Ramon123 | 2 maart 2011

Who Killed the Electric car was pure rubbish and pure fiction.
I was there when the EV1 came along, in fact I had followed its
development for years, ever since the oil crisis had prompted GM
and others (Toyota and Honda, in particular) to look for a way around pricey gasoline. But by the time these cars (the EV-1, Toyota Rav-4 electric, and Honda EV) were ready for market, the
price of oil had plummeted and NOBODY, but NOBODY wanted these rather usless, ultra expensive pain-in-the-butt EVs except for the
conscience-stricken tree huggers in California. And attempting to commute in LA with a 50 to 65 mile driving range is pretty dopey. Even today, with all the giant advances in batteries, Nissan is going to have a whole lot of issues with its So Cal Leaf owners, believe me. A vehicle with less than 100 miles driving range that requires many hours to recharge just ain't going to hack it. That's why the Tesla Model S is so far ahead of everything else out there. As he said, Musk isn't interested in simply building an electric car - he wants to build a car that people actually want to buy. He's certainly going to succeed with the Model S. Of that, there is no doubt.

qwk | 2 maart 2011

Pure rubbish and fiction?

You must live in a bubble.

Earl and Nagin ... | 3 maart 2011

We happened to have had one of those EV1s that you disparage. My wife and I both happen to be relatively conservative and are both military veterans. I certainly do like trees but you probably wouldn't call me a tree hugger, nor could you call many of the EV1 drivers that. There's nothing liberal or tree hugging about not wanting to be at the mercy of a commodity that we know will run out and depend on others to provide. Just because liberals and tree huggers like something doesn't make it bad or only good for them.
I do agree that the Model S could be the death warrant for oil and the internal combustion engine. Tesla definitely gets it and is realistic enough to know that you can't go for the market that anyone can afford with a new technology initially.
I also believe that the Leaf will sell to enough people to make it a success, even if Nissan has done some stupid things and it clearly won't work for everyone. Remember it can charge in a half hour using the DC fast charger.

Roblab | 4 maart 2011

Many of us who owned EVs and lived during the Auto company's and Oil company's drive to back out of the agreement with CARB know the movie was spot on. I have never been a tree hugger, but I would truly like to see Tesla rule the 100 year old good old boy system of cars on a lot, parts and service, no improvements until forced (Shatterproof glass, catalytic converters)or moved by some cheap Japanese company doing it better, like no puddle of oil on your garage floor every morning, or where you park in the day, or one finger closing of the trunk lids. Chevy's good ol boys still don't seem to get it. They need to die a natural death.

Sudre | 4 maart 2011

For the life of me I can not figure out why the US/my government bailed out the American car companies. I am more of a left from center person but I do still believe in the free market. If the customer does not want your product then you go out of business. Heck if you won't sell the customer your product you go out of business.

My last car was purchased about 10 years ago because I am not going to pay MORE money for a product that has not changed except for it's color/shape.

Tesla is going to produce a Sedan that is very different than the norm.... I will be happy to buy one.

Mercedes and toyota may one day try to eliminate the competition but at the moment people still want ICE cars so there wouldn't be a need to take out Tesla.

I had called about purchasing an EV1 and was told it was lease only. No possibility of purchase at any price. Now go reread my first paragraph.

ckessel | 5 maart 2011

@Sudre: Basic economics. If bailing out saves more jobs/money than it costs, then it's a good investment. Major US auto vendors closing up means lost jobs there and in a bunch of related industries that supply it. All of those jobs provide salaries that get taxes. Workers not working also are more likely to end up on welfare of some sort for some time.

Now, whether you agree with the analysis it was a worthwhile investment or not is another matter given the subjectivity of predicting numbers. But the concept of investing the money because it'll save in the long run is obviously tried and true.

Dan5 | 6 maart 2011

You are correct if you look at the surface of basic economics. But if you dig deeper, the economic fall out of letting GM and Chrysler fail would not be as bad as certain proponents of the auto bail out would let you believe. In a very detailed economic analysis,the car company bail is actually a net job and financial loss.
The bail would ONLY affect those two manufacturers. Think about it this way. A certain amount of people buy new cars every year (more or less a fixed number- It's around 2.5 million). The question is, how much brand loyalty is associated with certain car manufacturers, to the point where certain people will only buy a certain brand car (or how many people have been burned by every other car brand- that's a very very small number)? Maybe 0.1% would keep their car, and that's being generous.
In terms of sales, those sales would just be diverted to the surviving car manufacturers (Toyota, Honda, Ford, Hyundai, Kia, etc). If GM stops selling their Yukon, the parts supplier can just retool to meet Toyota's needs (jobs) and sell their new seats to fit inside the Tundra. And if your really want to split hairs their would be more profit for the Toyota supplier than the GM supplier (just the way those two companies deal with pricing with suppliers)
Secondly, due to the expected increase in sales, the surviving car companies may have to expand their sales force, mechanics, and support staff (pick up the laid off people from those failed companies) and expand their sales store to meet the current increased traffic (more of a capital investment so your are employing construction workers)
Furthermore, for that small percentage of people who hold out and keep their GM or Chrysler, those cars are going to have to be repaired ( now those suppliers have another market to sell those parts, probably cheaper at auto stores instead of dealerships). That puts more money into that person's pocket to spend and spur job growth.
But they did the bail out so there is no way to determine if this thesis is correct or not.

Sudre | 6 maart 2011

I live in St. Louis where they closed a plant and after the bail-out they reopened the plant in Mexico so there was NO net gain in taxes or workers just losses. Probably a boom for Mexico. My brother worked for one of the parts suppliers and he lost his job when that company went belly up. They never did reopen anything car related in St. Louis.

I also feel that cars are just like gas. It's a must have, particularly in St. Louis, to do anything like hold down a job.... SO like gas if one car manufacturer goes belly up, whether you like them or not, you have to purchase a new or used one sooner or later.

I own a 2001 Saturn. I've had relatively low maintenance on the car and I'd buy another if they made an electric one.... but they went out of business. I still have to purchase a new car some day so I will most likely purchase a Tesla Model S. Did Tesla receive any bail-out money to expand? If the Government had given Tesla ALL that money do you think they would have thrown it away or built with it getting different models out quicker, hiring more California's to build them?

Dan5 | 6 maart 2011

Tesla did not get a bail out, but the did get a loan, which was by no means as generous as the bail out money in terms of interest and amount of money, and the loan had some pretty hefty personnel costs associated with it (Musk HAS to be CEO)
If Tesla was given bail out money, like the Detroit companies, they could subsidize their cars in order to get them on the road (kind of like Toyota did with the 1st generation Prius).
I agree that Tesla is probably the great hope of American car manufacturing, to the point where a substantial portion of their car is made in the USA, providing Americans with jobs. I read an article that said, that the cost of developing the Model S was the same cost as paying the CEO for GM for 4 years.

With any other car, you have final assembly in the US, but most parts from China or India (steel) and Mexico (most engine blocks and transmissions), and maybe some small electronic components from Japan and to run the car, and sundries probably from your country. you are getting energy from the Middle East (Saudi Arabia, Libya, Kuwait, etc)

In a Tesla, the aluminum is probably coming from Jamaica, Japan (finished cells & electronics) and Brazil, Chile or Argentina for the battery raw materials. Energy from your own country, and sundries from USA.

Ramon123 | 16 april 2011

Anyone who seriously believes that Who Killed the Electric Car is anything other than a fictitious piece of utter nonsense needs to
learn some history away from Hollywood's silver screen, a place that has manufactured more "history" than Goebbles ever did for his Nazi central govt.

Ramon123 | 16 april 2011

As for the likelihood of Mercedes or Toyota "killing" Tesla,
there are only three ways of getting rid of a competitor :
1) severely undercut their prices with equivalent products,
2) steal their customers with better performance:service and/or products
3) buy them.
I don't think 1 and 2 are very likely and Musk says he's not interested in being taken over.
Any other idle worries on your mind?

ChadS | 22 april 2011

Ramon, I agree that Tesla is not in a lot of danger from Mercedes and Toyota. And I agree that "Who Killed the Electric Car" was one-sided and left some arguments out. It had a definite point of view it was representing.

But "fictitious"? "Utter nonsense"? No way. I've seen it twice, and can't think of anything in it that was factually incorrect. Could you please give us a couple of examples of errors in the movie?

I do see some errors in your earlier post above. For example, you said "NOBODY, but NOBODY" wanted the cars. They sold and leased every one they offered, so you are obviously incorrect. We don't know how many they could have sold or leased, because they didn't try. So nobody can know if the demand would have been only a little higher, or a lot higher than what they offered. When they started taking them away, people protested. After they stopped selling them new, the ones that weren't crushed were sometimes selling for double their initial cost. I'm not claiming that everybody wanted one, but that's clearly not a product that "NOBODY, but NOBODY" wants.

Another example is the range. In 2008 I bought one of those old RAV4s. All these years later, it STILL gets 100 miles per charge. And that handles all of my wife's daily driving. So saying they are useless (and a pain in the butt? drivers loved them!) with 50-65 miles of range is also clearly incorrect.

There is obviously something you don't like about the movie--that's OK, it was a POV piece, and everybody's got an opinion. Why not just tell us what part you don't like?

Lush1 | 26 april 2011

Given Tesla's business relationships with Toyota and Daimler, it seem like those would be the least likely companies to pose a threat to Tesla. Daimler is building a new Model A Mercedes EV for the European market using the Tesla power train. Tesla also has projects with Toyota. It would be antithetical to those companies interests if Tesla failed, unless you believe that these partnerships are a ploy; a devious conspiracy to destroy Tesla from within no matter what it costs them. A person would have to espouse some deeply perverted paranoia to believe that. Toyota and Daimler throwing in with Tesla is a powerful validation and shows faith that TM can, and will deliver the goods. Tesla is independent enough to be innovative, no matter who feels threatened by that. No big money has it's hooks into Tesla. Looks like the Model S is going to be a game changer, no matter who doesn't like it. I love it. Go Tesla. If the other big auto making dinosaurs can't see that they are running out of time, drive them into extinction.

qwk | 27 april 2011

The big automakers would and should be extinct, if it wasn't for special interests like the UAW.