Last week, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed an executive order, requiring that all new car sales in California must be electric by 2035.
In an opinion piece in the South China Morning Post Tuesday, Daniel Langer posited that the unveiling of the Tesla Model S Plaid combined with California’s ban on gas cars could “spell the end for luxury motor brands.”
This is, of course, unless those luxury motor brands are to act quickly in developing their own electric vehicles (EVs).
The Tesla Model S Plaid is set to be one of the fastest cars on the road, and with a range of about 520 miles per charge, it’s hard to see why anyone would buy another luxury car.
Tesla Model S Plaid
-520+mi Range (Est.)
-200mph Top Speed
-Acceleration from 0-60 mph: <2.0s
-Quarter mile: <9.0s
-Tri Motor All-Wheel Drive
Beginning late 2021 pic.twitter.com/WDXHQRq6C6
— Safwan AhmedMia (@SuperSaf) September 23, 2020
Langer argues that Tesla’s development of the Model S Plaid threatens other luxury or high-performance automakers who have not kept up with sustainable technology enough to survive through the transition to EVs.
In the article, Langer writes, “This is a nightmare for brands that have spent the last few decades cashing in on high performance sedans, as none of their fast cars – such as BMW’s M collection, Mercedes’ AMG models, and Porsche’s Turbo models – can compete with the Plaid. Years of underestimating technological shifts mean that these brands are facing a serious dilemma, and it may be too late for some.”
While it’s not totally clear what the future will hold for some of these luxury brands, it will depend almost entirely on their ability to adapt to the modern market. Unfortunately for them, the Model S Plaid is already outperforming them, creating a true, existential threat to any car company that cannot keep up with the move to sustainable transportation.
Zachary Visconti is a writer with a knack for electric vehicles, technology, and climate change. Currently residing in Fort Collins, Colorado, Zach loves his partner, his cat, and a good cup of coffee.