Electric Cars By Tech Giants: Will Elon Have The Last Laugh?

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After seeing the unexpected demand and rise in the mind-boggling sales of Tesla cars, other tech giants were quick to announce their plans to roll out their own electric cars to claim a sizeable share of the electric cars market. Elon Musk, known for his outspoken nature and blunt leadership style, couldn’t let the opportunity to take a dig go waste.

Early this month, Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk, known for his notorious memes and social media outreach, took a jab at tech companies trying to get in on the EV space action! Nearly a month after that humiliating tweet from Elon, tech companies haven’t shown any significant progress to give a befitting reply to Elon.

Musk took to Twitter to troll Sony, Apple, LG, Huawei, and many other tech giants who have shown increased interest in rolling out electric vehicles in the automobile market as of late.

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Currently, Apple is focusing on launching its very own Apple Car by the end of 2024, whereas Sony and Huawei have both shown intent to do the same by offering a sneak peek at the Vision S prototype and SERES SF5, respectively.

A netizen tweeted that all these major tech giants are currently busy ‘making a car’. And to that, Elon Musk, in a reply, mentioned that ‘prototypes are easy and production is hard’.

This is very much true, and who better than Musk to know about it. In the early days, Tesla itself has had its own share of bumpy rides while producing electric-powered cars at scale.

In 2018, despite setting a somewhat ambitious goal of producing 6000 units of Model 3, Musk failed to achieve the target. And that is something that continued till last year for different Tesla models.

Looks like Elon Musk was confident about the mistakes and challenges other companies would be facing in the future, which will eventually delay their rollout plans. It’s been nearly a month since Elon took a dig at Xiaomi, Apple, LG, Huawei and we have heard nothing but a huge silence from them. Unlike these tech giants, automobile companies are making noise every other day to let the world know how serious they are about their electric car business. Ford has recently announced that it’s doubling down the investment in electric car production, while Hyundai has decided to scale down the production of ICE to ramp up the production of electric cars.

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However, the tech companies have made negligible progress since they first revealed their intention of jumping into the business of electric cars.

The lesson here is that it is obviously easier said than done. For instance, when news first emerged about Apple trying to find suitable partners for EV Apple Car, one of the major concerns that analysts expressed was the iPhone maker’s domain experience.

Sure, Apple has deep pockets and, along with that, also has access to all the resources they could ever want. But, building a self-driving car poses several supply chain challenges. It took the 49-year-old CEO of Tesla 10 years before he could make his luxury electric automobile company sustainably profitable.

The tech giants who are currently involved in actively building electric vehicles need to acknowledge that it will definitely not be an easy road. First, they would need to gauge consumer demand for the vehicles post, after which they’d need to figure out which automobile giant to partner with, as producing large volumes of cars right out of the gate is near impossible.

The setback for tech companies has already started appearing. Quite recently, Hyundai called off the deal with Apple, wiping off $8.5 billion in its market value. This passes a stern warning message to other companies wanting to partner with tech companies for electric cars. Apple is back to hunting, and now negotiating with LG for its Apple car project.

Huawei is struggling with its smartphone business and the company’s first priority now is to have an impressive alternative of Google Android OS to get its smartphones back to business. Comprising mainly smartphones, the Huawei devices business unit accounts for a lion’s share of the company’s total profit. It’s going to be an uphill battle for Huawei to get back to the golden era with Harmony OS, scheduled for launch next week.

The scenario with other tech companies that are willing to challenge Tesla’s dominance in the electric market is no different either.

But that’s not the only challenge these tech companies are bound to face.

Post putting in all of that sweat equity and actual cash, they would still need to fight the existing rivals such as Tesla for market space. Thus the question that arrives here is – would it be worth it for Sony, Huawei, Apple, LG, etc., or are they better off sticking to their own lanes and doing what they do best? Or it’s going to be Elon Musk who would have the last laugh! Only time will tell.

Musk’s Tesla is currently gearing up to launch in India and take on homegrown Indian players such as Tata Motors. We will keep you updated on future developments. Until then, stay tuned.

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