As US-China lock horns on the production and supply of low-cost electric vehicles, former Tesla Chief Executive Officer Martin Eberhard said that its a shame that the Elon Musk-led company is planning to delay its low-cost car program. While speaking at the inaugural HSBC Global Investment Summit on Tuesday, Martin Eberhard asked Tesla to rethink the decision as low-cost EVs have a better market than its gigantic trucks.

“I read recently that Tesla has decided not to pursue their Model 2, their low-end car because they don’t think they can compete with the low-end Chinese cars,” Eberhard said in an interview with Bloomberg TV at the summit. “I think that’s a shame, they might want to rethink that. It seems like a better market than that gigantic truck they make,” the former CEO added.

Martin Eberhard’s remarks came after a Reuters report which claimed that Tesla has called off its plans to manufacture a less-expensive vehicle. The report was denied by incumbent CEO Elon Musk, but the market is abuzz with claims like Tesla is shifting its focus on introducing a robotaxi to the market.

Elon Musk has always sounded optimistic about Tesla’s ongoing innovations and hinted at the possibility of a $25,000 electric vehicle (EV) during an event in September 2020. The Tesla CEO said that the advancements could enable the production of an EV at such a price point within approximately three years.

Rising focus on cost

Speaking on the electric vehicles sector, Martin Eberhard expressed excitement about the entry of different players and said the company “needs to be focused on cost instead of focusing on technology for the sake of technology.”

“It’s important to understand that the automotive space is not like Silicon Valley in the sense that this is not a space in which there is a winner-takes-all technology. We can have a dozen different car companies around the world making a dozen different types of cars, meeting different positions in the market and all succeeding.”

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Published: 09 Apr 2024, 02:32 PM IST

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