Could This Be the Tesla Killer?

September 5, 2018

By Amanda Weston

After Mercedes-Benz's unveiling this week of its first all-electric car, automotive journalist and future Cheddar contributor Tamara Warren said the market is about to get a lot more competitive.

"It's huge news for Mercedes-Benz, and a real signal in this space that we are about to have a lot of options when it comes to the electric category, luxury, and the sweet space with crossover vehicles," Warren said Wednesday in an interview on Cheddar.

The model, dubbed EQC, is an all-wheel drive SUV with a range of more than 200 miles. Dieter Zetsche, the head of Mercedes and chairman of parent company Daimler AG, called it the "dawn of a new era".

The announcement Tuesday further weighed on shares of Tesla, whose stock marked a seventh straight day of losses Wednesday. Warren said the electric automaker may certainly have cause to worry about its new competitor, but "that's the nature of the business."

"If there's no competition, where's the market going to go?" she said. "What I think it forces Tesla to do is to continue to push their vehicles and not stall on thinking about new features and products and innovation."

Whether Tesla can find that focus is something Warren says investors should watch.

"Tesla is a really tricky company to follow right now, and you're talking about companies that have sort of infrastructure internally as far as safety and all of the quality that needs to be there coming into this space, not just Mercedes-Benz. But we're also seeing Audi as a player in this field, BMW, and Volvo," Warren said.

"So it's going to get really interesting by spring when we start seeing some of these vehicles."

The EQC is set to begin production in 2019 and go on sale in the U.S. in 2020. Mercedes-Benz has not yet announced what the vehicle will cost.

For full interview click here.

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