Blitzkrieg? German Automakers Prepare to Test Tesla’s Might


During World War II a blitzkrieg was a German military tactic designed to create disorganization in enemies through short, fierce military campaigns. It’s also been referred to as a “lightning war.”

We’re all friends now, of course, but can the term be applied to what the German automakers want to do to Tesla, the scrappy American automaker?

Tesla, as everyone knows, continues to do the impossible by shattering expectations of what a car company should be. Unlike established automakers, it doesn’t have a dealer network, it sells only electric cars, and its best-selling car is only 3 years old.

Yet the Model S is hands-down the most popular electric car in the world.

Can the German juggernauts stop it?

BMW already has its i3 and i8. Audi and Mercedes-Benz are planning some friendly competition for Tesla and, most recently, Porsche showed its idea for a contender:

The iconic German automaker on Monday unveiled its new Mission E concept, a new four-door, four-seat all-electric car that features system power of 600 horsepower, acceleration of 0 to 60 miles per hour in under 3.5 seconds, and a driving range of more than 310 miles per charge. Porsche says that it takes around 15 minutes to reach an 80% charge of the car, so it shouldn’t take you very long to get the car back on the road if you find yourself running low on juice during a drive.

This car wouldn’t exist if Tesla never did. In fact, the entire German electric obsession wouldn’t be happening right now had Tesla fizzled out in its early years.

It’s interesting because the market for premium electric vehicles is exceptionally small right now, but none of the premium automakers want to let Tesla have it. They must know that there’s a future in electric cars, and catching up with Tesla’s head start on the market is a top priority.

But this battle isn’t going to be a “lightning war.” To compete with, and beat, Tesla, the Germans will need an onslaught of sleek, attractive, high-performance cars that cost less and go farther. They’ll also need to figure out an answer to the issue of charging.

A major selling point of buying a Tesla is free access to the company’s network of Supercharger stations, which other electric cars aren’t able to use. That means a Tesla could drive across the country, while the Porsche would be stopped somewhere in the mountains waiting for a AAA charging truck.

Which car would you rather have, the Tesla Model S or the Porsche Mission E concept?


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