Published on June 16, 2019 |
by dr. Maximilian Holland
16. June 2019 by Dr. Maximilian Holland
The renowned Tesla bear Bob Lutz recently praised the quality of workmanship of Tesla's vehicles. He checked a model 3: "Not only the paint was without apparent defects, but also formed the various panels A body full of precision, which did not blame.
This is a significant remark by Lutz, who has been singing for years about Tesla's impending demise. Lutz, now a veteran of the auto industry retired, has at best mixed views on the largest EV manufacturer in the world.
We remember that Tesla unveiled the world's first compelling long-distance EV in July 2006, the Roadster. Then, in August 2006, Elon Musk announced the secret Tesla Motors master plan and announced the planned product roadmap for ever cheaper electric vehicles.
Lutz later wrote Tesla's roadster and early electric vehicle plans (along with the early success of the Prius) famously) as inspiration for work on the Chevrolet Volt (see Chris Payne's Revenge of the Electric Car for an earlier story ). Lutz has also said about Tesla and his pioneering work on electric vehicles that he "will always owe them a gratitude if they have broken the ice". Lutz obviously recognizes the role Tesla played early in creating the EV renaissance and renewal, inspiring others to work on their own electric vehicles.
Lutz has praised Tesla's vehicles themselves and said about the Tesla Model S: "A Model S is one of the fastest, best-to-use, best-performing limousines that you can buy in the world today, especially in performance enhancements. … The acceleration times will beat over $ 350,000 for every European exot. "
Lutz, however, often expressed doubts about Tesla's business model and lack of profitability orientation. There are many examples of Tesla bashing by Lutz, but this example gives the general impression: "Tesla's business model is upside down. … Their costs have always been higher than their revenues. … They have to raise more and more capital, then they burn it. "We've covered the shadow Lutz Tesla has had on several occasions in recent years – if you want more examples, you can find our complete archive here. Charles Morris also has an excellent article that lists many of Lutz's various statements about Tesla and Elon Musk if you want a good start.
My own understanding of Lutz's misunderstanding of Tesla's strategy of investing in growth is quite simple. Lutz himself has always been a career man who worked for existing, well-established automakers that went well beyond their early stages of growth and probably never understood the culture of an innovative start-up to disrupt the status quo. Probably he did not realize Tesla's conscious focus on continuous investments in (exceptionally) high growth, not in quarterly profits per se . This is a deliberate business strategy by Tesla that Elon Musk repeated at the last Tesla 2019 Annual General Meeting.
Due to fairness to Lutz, he could hardly hope to understand this given his own career. Since retiring from his more conventional leadership positions, Lutz has been involved in only two small start-up companies (VIA Motors and VLF Automotive). It does not seem to have gone beyond showing gross concepts, nor have either either failed or gone into suspended animation. In short, Lutz has never been involved in a successful launch. He is not an entrepreneur.
Bob Lutz. Photo credits: Ed Schipul / [CC BY-SA 2.0] about Wikimedia Commons
The wind has now changed again and Lutz praises Tesla's vehicles again. In a recent article on road and rail Lutz writes: "When I spied out a metal-red model 3 in a parking lot in Ann Arbor, I felt compelled to check it." Lutz expected to have proof The "production hell" of the Tesla Model 3 was capitalized, with uneven sheet metal gaps and imperfections in the paint job.
To his great surprise, Lutz found something completely different:
"But when I was sitting next to the car, I was stunned. The varnish was not only flawless, but the various panels also formed a body full of precision, which it was not objectionable. The gaps from the bonnet to the fenders, from the doors to the frame and from all the others seemed to be perfectly even, side to side and perfectly parallel. Gaps of 3.5 to 4.5 mm are considered a word class. This model 3 has proven itself.
If anyone fears that Lutz was abducted and replaced by an avatar, do not sweat:
"So, while I continue to be critical of Tesla's business model, and Musk's strategy, it was impossible to criticize the visual quality of this model 3 , "Thank you Bob, good to know that some things never change. 😉
Editor's Note: As much as I have laughed at Bob Lutz's comments on Tesla over the years, I think he deserves huge props for his openness and openness So Tesla praised publicly after he had expressed so much pessimism about the company's ability to succeed or produce some of its vehicles (Model S, Model X, Model 3). Thank you to Bob, who was not a tribal Tesla troll.