By on September 27, 2017

eq concept mercedes-benz

Daimler has fired back after Telsa CEO Elon Musk returned to Twitter to speak his mind on the company’s decision to drop $1 billion into its Alabama plant. The investment is intended to aid production of a forthcoming electric SUV but, earlier this week, Musk said that wasn’t “a lot of money for a giant like Daimler/Mercedes. Wish they’d do more. Off by a zero.”

The following day, the Daimler responded over social media, suggesting Musk was “absolutely right” and pointed out that it’s actually investing over $10 billion, with only the first billion going into the assembly plant.

Whether you’re interested in electric vehicles or not, you have to admit these inter-automotive squabbles make the entire happening a lot more interesting. While cars themselves can be exciting, the corporate environment that facilitates their production is usually much less so. There’s also a chance that this type of good-natured clashing might result in a more competitive spirit — something we definitely would not mind seeing more of. 

Later, Musk jokingly claimed in a response to Dean Kawamura that he was responsible for Daimler’s investment. While the claim could be made that Tesla’s very existence has helped push traditional automakers into the current electrical revolution, the Tesla CEO wasn’t directly responsible for the $10 billion. He simply responded to the headline of an article he didn’t read to completion.

However, when Daimler outlined the full monetary contribution it was making toward EVs, Musk’s response was brief. “Good,” he said.

On September 21st, Daimler announced plans to produce an electric SUV under Mercedes-Benz’s EQ sub-brand at its Tuscaloosa plant in Alabama. The company is also building a separate battery facility next to the assembly plant. According to Mercedes, EQ will focus specifically on electric vehicles and charging solutions.

[Image: Daimler AG]

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2 Comments on “Online Ribbing Between Automakers Bolsters the Competitive Spirit We Like...”

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    Well, I guess he’s being true to his word that he’d like everyone to go electric.

    There’s no question that Nissan and Tesla have raised the bar for EVs, but every mfr has to decide whether they want or need to make money producing EVs. In order to eventually reach profitability, Tesla can’t afford to be tentative. But all the ICE mfrs are decidedly more hesitant since they don’t want to give up short-term profits for a ‘maybe’ future.

  • avatar

    Wait, is someone talking about the German car manufacturers’ competitive spirit? Good one! (Since they’ve been illegally COLLUDING with each other since before the ’90s)

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