When it comes to choosing your new electric car, Aston Martin CEO Andy Palmer doesn’t understand why anyone would buy anything but an ultra-luxury vehicle. His main point, who needs a Tesla when you can just drive away with an Aston Martin?
Today, Aston Martin is determined to be a frontrunner when it comes to the luxury electric vehicles market. And for Palmer, the timing is perfect since its competition has already failed in making a successful entry.
During an interview with CNBC, Palmer acknowledged that Rolls-Royce, Ferrari and Bentley have all tried and failed to capture the EV market with their own models. This is why Aston Martin is now poised “to be a trailblazer in luxury electrics.”
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Palmer himself is no stranger to EV technology. That’s because he was the man behind Nissan’s Leaf electric vehicle program when he served as an executive vice president for the Japanese carmaker.
He knows the ups and downs of EV production, so much so that he admits it will take some time to break into the market succesfully. “It’s going to take a while, for sure. You’ve got a difficult circle to break, you need volume,” Palmer explained.
As one my recall, Tesla CEO and founder Elon Musk echoed the same sentiment when it came to eventually being able to produce electric vehicles on a massive scale. In fact, his Master Plan consisted of producing a low volume car and medium volume car in order to allow the company to finally produce an “affordable, high volume car.”
With its new Gigafactory in Nevada, it seems the stage is set for Tesla to begin upping its production numbers on an impressive scale. In fact, the company’s future plans include the production of about 500,000 each year.
As for Aston Martin, Palmer says the company plans to launch the Aston Martin RapidE in 2018. To make this car possible, the luxury carmaker actually teamed up with LeEco, a Chinese technology firm.
While it’s true that it’s still a long time before Aston Martin’s EV comes out, Palmer couldn’t help but take a little dig at Tesla just the same. “I would argue that Tesla fits in the premium market, competing with the likes of BMW and Mercedes. Aston sits above that,” he says.