The Economist chimes in. "The Rich and Indulgent" - Rennlist - Porsche Discussion Forums

Go Back  Rennlist - Porsche Discussion Forums > Water Cooled Technical Discussion Areas > Mission-E
Reload this Page > The Economist chimes in. "The Rich and Indulgent"
Mission-E The Electric Porsche
Sponsored by:
Sponsored by:

The Economist chimes in. "The Rich and Indulgent"


Old 03-05-2018, 11:55 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 127
Default The Economist chimes in. "The Rich and Indulgent"

German cars have the most to lose from a changing auto industry

Tardy arrival has significant costs. Suppliers are not in place to support an entirely new industry. German expertise in making chemicals and electronics could have been deployed to produce a battery industry to feed a thriving electric-car market. "We have no one in Germany who really understands batteries, and we lack the value chain; we are very, very late", laments Ferdinand Dudenhöffer, of the Centre for Automotive Research, in Essen.

Another problem is how to defend the carefully nurtured brands themselves from disruption. The reputation was built on superior engineering, ICEs and driving pleasure. Premium cars sell for more because they are on the cutting edge of developments in motoring. Antilock brakes, turbocharged (diesel) engines and a host of other whizzy extras all showed up first on German cars. In return carmakers can charge more and rake in fatter profits than their mass-market counterparts (margins average around 10% compared with 5% or below in the mass market).

Yet desirable brands and mechanical brilliance may be much less use as carmaking is turned upside down. EVs, mobility services and autonomous vehicles are likely to be increasing sources of profits. Electric motors are largely standardised and may not command the same premium. German cars, engineered to please their discerning drivers, are unlikely to carry the same kudos when vehicles drive themselves. BMW, which advertised its cars as "The Ultimate Driving Machine" may have to rethink its marketing.

It may be that the last hold-outs who drive themselves are the rich and indulgent. If so, conventional luxury cars will still have some customers. But that could be an ever dwindling niche. The onus is on carmakers to prove they can successfully reinvent themselves--and continue to keep the German economy in the fast lane.
urbanscribe is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-2018, 01:12 AM
Lifetime Rennlist
OldGuy's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Southwest Idaho
Posts: 10,438

By the time electrics become main stream these companies will have figured things out. These companies aren't stupid. They didn't become leaders by shoving their heads in the sand. It will be decades
before the companies making electric cars become the norm. Gas is still inexpensive. 18 wheelers still have the main advantage than electrics cant solve. Range. Battery technology is advancing fast. By fast I mean in their context fast means that a 1.5 volt battery of yesterday is far out paced by the lithium batteries of today. But by our standards of driving they are still moving pretty slow. Telsa still has to solder thousands of cells together to get the battery pack on their cars. And these batteries are still flammable and I almost burnt my house down with a drone battery recharging unit. Whats going to happen when homes catch on fire charging their car at night when a circuit over heats and they will over heat. Plus there are two dirty little secrets the makers of these cars haven't talked about. One- where are all these billions of batteries that are toxic going to be disposed of. Its not a big deal now because the numbers are small. The cars are still novelties. But where are these burnt out batteries going to be disposed of when billions of cars are electrics?
Two-nobody talks about the fact electricity isn't free. It doesn't grow on trees, solar technology is no where near to the point you can recharge while driving. A small percentage comes from solar, and wind power. A larger percentage comes from hydraulic power. But 60% of electricity in the United States comes from natural gas and coal. So how is that reducing our carbon footprint if you are burning fuels to produce electricity? Are you going to give up your freedom of a ICE car to go anywhere any time for burning a bunch of carbon producing fuel to give you limited range, hourly charging times on long trips and toxic by-products of dead batteries. I don't think so and certainly not in my lifetime. I think there are a few engineering problems to solve before Tesla is the new Porsche/Audi/Mercedes equivalent.
OldGuy is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2018, 12:07 AM
Rennlist Member
DC911S's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 2,143

Disposal of toxic batteries and other things usually go to third world countries where there is little or no environmental regulations. Same for lithium and cobalt mining. People in those places actually turn color mining toxic minerals. It’s nasty stuff, and people who gloss over electric cars....seem not to care much about it. Copper mines, open pit, are also very nasty. In Nevada they are all over the place, leaching out mercury and other nasty things into soil and water. Old mines that have not been reclaimed.
DC911S is offline  
Reply With Quote

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites.
  • Ask a Question
    Get answers from community experts
Question Title:
Your question will be posted in: