Bad Vibes: Ford Takes on Tesla After 'Morgue' Comment

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
bad vibes ford takes on tesla after 8216 morgue comment

Who doesn’t love a battle between automakers? Personally, I find the upper-crust sniping between Rolls-Royce and Lagonda both charming and hilarious, but the fun ramps up when the fight involves builders of more accessible products.

In a Wall Street Journal article published late Wednesday, Tesla CEO Elon Musk copped to sleeping under his desk near his Fremont assembly plant’s body shop, part of an all-out effort to reach a lofty (and delayed) June 30th production target. Some of the plant’s assembly work has moved into a large outdoor tent. Old-fashioned manpower has been called in to help crank out vehicles. This, from an automaker that not long ago expressed worry that wind resistance might slow down the pace of its futuristic automated assembly line.

Musk admitted he’s made some mistakes. There’s a tent, after all. But that didn’t stop him from telling the reporter, “I think there’s a good vibe—I think the energy is good; go to Ford, it looks like a morgue.”

Ford was quick to respond.

From Ford Motor Company’s vice-president of communications came this gem:

No doubt the vibe is funky in that “makeshift tent,” but it’s not bad either across the street at the plant where a high quality, high-tech F-150 rolls off the line every 53 seconds like clockwork. Come check it out @elonmusk

— Mark Truby (@mtruby) June 28, 2018

Not to be outdone by Truby’s jab, Ford’s North American product communications manager, Mike Levine, took note of how Tesla seems to prefer Ford vehicles for its service arm.

Tesla will send a *Ford* service truck to your office. FTFY.

— Mike Levine (@mrlevine) June 28, 2018

Found Tesla’s pickup truck.

— Mike Levine (@mrlevine) June 28, 2018

All eyes are on Tesla as the automaker strives to meet its self-imposed production target of 5,000 Model 3 sedans per week by the end of the month. Only when this occurs, Musk claims, will the company be able to throw new variants into the production mix. Among them, dual-motor and performance sedans, as well as the long-awaited $35,000 base model.

Reaching this target on time, and getting pricier versions of the Model 3 into production ASAP, is key to Musk’s plan to reverse Tesla’s negative cash flow by the end of the year. The automaker’s share value might depend on it.

[Image: Ford Motor Company]

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  • Ilkhan Ilkhan on Jun 30, 2018

    Doesn't matter. Detroit dies the day Tesla unveils their pickup, unless Ford/GM figure it out beforehand. Ford and GM live on profits on their trucks and SUVs, and any decent sized sales drop will do a number on them.

    • JimZ JimZ on Jun 30, 2018

      With what assembly facilities? Ford uses three assembly plants to build the F-Series. Right now Tesla can't even match the weekly volume of one of them.

  • Carroll Prescott Carroll Prescott on Jul 02, 2018

    I wouldn't buy a Tesla because of the people who buy them - these fools are just like Honduh and Toyoduh buyers - all superior and they think they've discovered sliced cheese. Sadly all they've done is to over pay for a product which is worse for the environment over its entire manufacture and service life compared to a comparably sized fossil fuel product. And no, a Model 3, is not comparable to a BMW. It barely is comparable to a lowly and ugly Toyoduh Corolla.

  • Aidian Holder I'm not interested in buying anything from a company that deliberately targets all their production in crappy union-busting states. Ford decided to build their EV manufaturing in Tennessee. The company built it there because of an anti-union legal environment. I won't buy another Ford because of that. I've owned four Fords to date -- three of them pickups. I'm shopping for a new one. It won't be a Ford Lightning. If you care about your fellow workers, you won't buy one either.
  • Denis Jeep have other cars?!?
  • Darren Mertz In 2000, after reading the glowing reviews from c/d in 1998, I decided that was the car for me (yep, it took me 2 years to make up my mind). I found a 1999 with 24k on the clock at a local Volvo dealership. I think the salesman was more impressed with it than I was. It was everything I had hoped for. Comfortable, stylish, roomy, refined, efficient, flexible, ... I can't think of more superlatives right now but there are likely more. I had that car until just last year at this time. A red light runner t-boned me and my partner who was in the passenger seat. The cops estimate the other driver hit us at about 50 mph - on a city street. My partner wasn't visibly injured (when the seat air bag went off it shoved him out of the way of the intruding car) but his hip was rather tweaked. My car, though, was gone. I cried like a baby when they towed it away. I ruminated for months trying to decide how to replace it. Luckily, we had my 1998 SAAB 9000 as a spare car to use. I decided early on that there would be no new car considered. I loathe touch screens. I'm also not a fan of climate control. Months went by. I decided to keep looking for another B5 Passat. As the author wrote, the B5.5 just looked 'over done'. October this past year I found my Cinderella slipper - an early 2001. Same silver color. Same black leather interior. Same 1.8T engine. Same 5 speed manual transmission. I was happier than a pig in sh!t. But a little sad also. I had replaced my baby. But life goes on. I drive it every day to work which takes me over some rather twisty freeway ramps. I love the light snarel as I charge up some steep hills on my way home. So, I'm a dyed-in-the-wool Passat guy.
  • Paul Mezhir As awful as the styling was on these cars, they were beautifully assembled and extremely well finished for the day. The doors closed solidly, the ride was extremely quiet and the absence of squeaks and rattles was commendable. As for styling? Everything's beautiful in it's own way.....except for the VI's proportions were just odd: the passenger compartment and wheelbase seemed to be way too short, especially compared to the VI sedan. Even the short-lived Town Coupe had much better proportions. None of the fox-body Lincolns could compare to the beautiful proportions of the Mark was the epitome of long, low, sleek and elegant. The proportions were just about perfect from every angle.
  • ToolGuy Silhouetting yourself on a ridge like that is an excellent way to get yourself shot ( Skylining)."Don't you know there's a special military operation on?"