Anyone who has followed Tesla’s history over the past few years would know that one of the main points of conversation against the electric car maker is the impending competition that comes from more experienced, more competent automakers. Critics have argued that once obsolete automakers become serious about their electric car efforts, an inexperienced company like Tesla will easily win. This scenario did not happen at all – and if the recent upgrades of Tesla’s range to its S3XY range have something to do with it, it becomes clear that the outdated car is ridiculously lagging behind in the race for electric cars.
Recent updates to the Tesla range, which were released along with the Model 3 “upgrade”;, have further cemented the company’s position at the top of the electric car market. With the new upgrades, the long-range AWD dual engine model was able to reach the EPA-rated range of 353 miles per charge, and even its stronger, heavier brother, the Y model, was able to reach a range of 326 miles. The Model X, the car’s incredibly heavy tank, reached 371 miles per charge, and even the energy-intensive Tesla Model S Performance is approaching 400 miles at 387 miles per charge.
It should be noted that Tesla was able to make these improvements without any major updates that it announced during Battery Day. During the long-awaited event, Tesla introduced a new form factor of its 4680 batteries, which has 5 times the volume of the Model 3 and 2170 cells of the Model Y. Tesla also announced a new car production system that gives priority to one-piece outflow and structural battery. Other innovations were also discussed, such as the use of high-nickel cathodes and silicon anodes.
None of these innovations apply to the recently updated Tesla cars.
Finally, Tesla’s latest updates underscore how far the company has come in the electric car sector. The fact that the electric carmaker was able to reach a range of 371 miles for the twin-engine AWD Model X Long Range with the same 100 kWh battery and the same 18650 cells as its predecessor, the Model X 100D, is almost ridiculous. This is especially noteworthy, given that the Audi e-tron, which has a battery almost the same size as the Model X, has a range of 222 miles, and this is an option with perfected range already.
Tesla’s leadership in the range becomes even more significant when you consider the Model 3 and Model Y, both of which use a battery that reaches almost 75 kWh. The comparison of the two cars against the competition shows a stark contrast to the Polestar 2, a car that is largely considered a legitimate competitor to the Model 3, and has an EPA-rated range of 233 miles on a 78 kWh battery. Jaguar I-PACE, a crossover that is quite similar in size to the Y model, adheres to the same model, with an EPA estimate of a range of 246 miles on a 90 kWh battery charge.
Today, there are many reasons for Tesla’s frantic leadership in the electric car sector, but much of it is probably due in large part to the company’s intense focus on battery technology and development. Tesla has been focused on improving and optimizing its batteries from day 1, and as you can see in the latest updates to the S3XY lineup, this obsessive optimization work is important. These efforts are not at all emulated by most obsolete automakers, as veterans seem to be usually content with using ready-made batteries from suppliers for their electric car programs.
And yet, perhaps the most inconvenient reason for the distance of obsolete cars from Tesla cars today is something much simpler: redundancy. Although outdated carmakers have said for years that they are serious about their future transition to electric cars, their actions have generally been far less tangible than their words. Today, it’s almost as if Tesla’s competitors in the electric car sector have been too comfortable just watching the electric car maker improve over the years. And now that Tesla has become a force that is very difficult to ignore, they are trying to catch up.
Unfortunately, it is very difficult to catch a moving target. By the time obsolete automakers are able to catch up with where Tesla is today, it is almost certain that the electric carmaker will be even further ahead. This distance is likely to be even further, as Tesla’s next-generation battery technology has not yet emerged. After the production of 4680 Tesla cells, and vehicles will be built with structural batteries, the gap between the electric car manufacturer and its competitors will certainly be even greater. And this, at least for the hereditary machine, is a scenario worthy of the final act of tragedy.