Tesla is an absolute darling of the media. The way it conducts business, its outspoken CEO Elon Musk and it’s undeniable achievements make for good stories. The Tesla Model 3 is proof pudding of this.
Through it all, General Motors remains unphased and plans to keep course with a “slow and steady wins the race” mantra. Forbes recently penned a report surrounding the Model 3 hyper versus the 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV’s rather silent marketing message. While Musk plans for 20,000 Model 3 deliveries in the month of December, GM is moving a little over 1,500 Bolt EVs per month, per July sales data.
GM recently idled its Orion assembly plant, which it says it not in response to slow Bolt EV sales, but rather slow Chevrolet Sonic sales. Indeed, the subcompact hatchback and sedan have had a difficult time finding driveways in the current market.
Jim Cain, Chevrolet Business and Dealer Communications, responded to the Model 3 production ramp up and said, “Tesla is certainly a unique company with a lot going for it. Let me respond…where is the 238-plus mile EV from Toyota, Honda, Fiat-Chrysler, Nissan, Hyundai-Kia, Nissan, Subaru, Mitsubishi, Mercedes, BMW, Volkswagen, Mazda, et al?”
GM is clearly measuring its success against traditional automakers, but might that be a long-term downfall? Sure, Tesla has a rough road ahead, but it’s gotten this far. Is underestimating the underdog a smart move?