Like it or not, Tesla is nearly an unrivaled leader in the electric car segment. The company has spent years developing luxurious electric cars that showed the public electric powertrains aren’t only for greener lifestyles, but can also be full-blown performance machines.
As an early adopter, Tesla has built a cult-like following, and General Motors recognizes the company’s significance. Speaking at an Axios event in Boston, Massachusettes, GM CEO Mary Barra told the audience Tesla is a “capable” rival to GM. She made the comment speaking of her company’s efforts to ramp up its presence in the electric-car market.
“[Tesla has] very capable electric vehicles. When we look at the landscape of competition from a car company perspective, whether it’s Tesla or whether it’s some of the global [equipment manufacturers], there’s very capable competition and that’s what kind of drives us. That’s why we’ve been so aggressive on investing in technology and moving quickly,” she said.
Numerous other automakers have begun investing in electric cars to tackle Tesla’s hold on the market. However, GM is one of a few companies with mass-market brands that have committed to electrifying its portfolio. GM plans for 20 electric cars by 2023, though it’s unclear how many will be sold in North America. China is a major reason for automakers’ rapid investment in electric cars.
Other makes bolsterings their presence in the electric-car segment are Volkswagen, Mercedes-Benz, Nissan and Volvo.
It’s not entirely clear where GM will move its focus to next. Previously, the automaker was tipped to launch a more luxurious electric car for the Buick brand based on the Chevrolet Bolt EV. However, slow adoption has reportedly led Buick to hold off on future electric car introductions. Before former Cadillac President Johan de Nysschen’s ouster, he said to expect many of the future electric cars to arrive as Cadillacs in North America.