The year 2012 could go down in history as the year electric cars became mainstream.
Naturally we have Tesla to thank for that, as its much-hyped Model S finally began arriving for customers that year. In the few short years since, the car has exploded in popularity, become more reliable, gotten faster, and incorporated some of the most advanced technology the auto industry has ever seen.
Other carmakers have taken notice and are watching Tesla closely.
One of the best ways to determine if a company will fade away or become a disruptive force that will challenge the world’s biggest automakers is to see if the established automakers respond.
Porsche has taken the bait and responded by becoming the first automaker to announce a car that truly emulates the Model S. Will its all-electric Mission E succeed in disrupting the disrupter?
Dr. Wolfgang Porsche said,
With Mission E, we are making a clear statement about the future of the brand. Even in a greatly changing motoring world, Porsche will maintain its front-row position with this fascinating sports car.
You might interpret that statement as Porsche’s way of taking a leadership role in the future of cars, or you could say the company is validating Tesla’s existence and admitting the Model S represents the future of the automobile.
The Mission E will be remarkably similar to the Model S. Both are 4-door sedans with dual-motor all-wheel drive, and both have battery compartments located under the passenger compartment floor. The 2020 Mission E will charge faster than the 2015 Tesla Model S , feature all-wheel steering, and come with 600 total horsepower compared with 532 on the Model S.
But 2020 is a long ways off and the Model S will likely have advanced enough by then to outperform the Mission E. Plus, the less-expensive Tesla Model 3 should be in production by then and the company’s Gigafactory should be running at full capacity. It’ll be hard to compete with that.
Other automakers have waited so long to compete with Tesla that it might be entirely too late to do anything but follow the undisputed king of electric cars.
If you were making the choice based on looks alone, would you buy the Porsche Mission E or the Tesla Model S?