Tim Draper To Detroit: Forget EVs, Start Making Flying Cars
Venture capitalist extraordinaire Tim Draper says Tesla has the resources to beat the Detroit Three. Detroit already has lost the electric war, Draper says, and it should pick a different battle to win. Like making flying cars.
Said Draper in an interview with the Detroit Free Press:
“Don’t live in your reality distortion field here in Detroit. Create a flying car. Create something different because you’ve lost the electric-car battle. See if you can win another.”
Draper’s venture capital firm Draper Fisher Jurvetson was an early investor into Tesla. Draper was one of the first to drive a Tesla.
The Freep isn’t ready to concede electric defeat and to recommend flying cars. Says the paper:
“Electric cars and partially electric vehicles haven’t yet achieved early sales projections. General Motors’ Chevrolet Volt hit a record month in August, but the company has offered discounted leases to juice sales and the vehicle will miss its original production targets for 2012. Still, GM has sold about 13,500 Volts so far this year, making it the most-popular vehicle with a large lithium-ion battery pack.”
The problem with Draper's claim is that the Tesla models are about double the price of the Volt and that Tesla models can't do the drive from say, Indianapolis to NYC in one drive w/o being plugged-in on the way.
Seems like Draper is advising the big3 like as if they were startups in his portfolio. Venture backed startups need to do something different and big, not plod along competing for low to moderate margin business in tough, cost driven competition with similar others. But the latter is exactly what large, established organizations need to do. The just have to do it more like Toyota did with the Prius than like GM has done with the Volt so far.
What the hell is this guy smoking? Or maybe I should ask what the folks at freep are smoking that they should take Draper's comment seriously.
Start making flying cars..hmmmm....Me thinks that Draper has been sniffing too many exhaust fumes...