A ton of legacy manufacturers have jumped on board the electric mobility train but none have come close to the largest electric vehicle manufacturer Tesla Inc. Although recently during an interview with the Financial Times, Tesla Inc. CEO Elon Musk praised the Volkswagen group’s efforts in the electric vehicle segment. The multi-billionaire stated that he believes apart from Tesla, Volkswagen is the one auto giant that has impressed him a lot in terms of electric vehicles.
The Tesla and SpaceX CEO Musk during the interview was asked which startup does he believes to have made the most strides in terms of EVs, to which he replied, “I think the company making the most progress besides Tesla is actually VW which is not a startup but could be viewed in some ways as a startup from an electric vehicle standpoint. So VW is doing the most on the electric vehicle front.”
Many believe that the praises Musk is singing for the German automaker’s EV progress is out of courtesy of the healthy friendly relationship that he and VW Group CEO Herbert Diess share. The CEOs of both the automotive manufacturing giants have previously acknowledged each other’s achievements on the EV front. Some people also believe that Musk could be returning the compliment to Herbert Diess as the VW CEO also recently complimented Musk’s accomplishment. Diess even invited Elon on a video call to address 200 executives of VW back in October of 2021.
Elon also added to his answer by saying, “I think there will be some very strong companies coming out of China. There’s a lot of super talented, hardworking people in China that strongly believe in manufacturing. They won’t just be burning the midnight oil, they’ll be burning the 3 am oil. They won’t even leave the factory type-of-thing, whereas in America, people are trying to avoid going to work at all.”
Meanwhile, rounding back to VW’s EV progress, the company CEO recently revealed that the German automaker expects its electric vehicle business to be as profitable as its fossil fuel-burning cars sooner than planned. Diess said, “We expect that the e-mobility business will be as profitable as the combustion engine business earlier than planned,” He added, “Through good crisis management, we are financially robust and have strengthened our resilience.”
Diess in recent times has been very vocal about the goals of VWs electric mobility segment. The CEO on many occasions has said that he aspires VW to takeover Tesla Inc. as the largest electric vehicle producer by 2025. According to the VW CEO, this can be achieved by offering a slew of products in the premium and luxury segments along with more products in the volume brands.
Volkswagen produced and dispatched 452,000 battery-electric vehicles worldwide last year and plans to make half of its global output all-electric by 2030. Tesla, which manufactured 936,000 vehicles last year, has stated that it hopes to have 20 million vehicles on the road by the end of the decade.