Ford boss Jim Farley has declared that the new Ford Mustang Mach-E – Ford’s electric SUV – is the first real Tesla competitor.
Tesla’s indisputable lead in electric cars means that every new electric car that turns up is compared to what Tesla delivers but, at least technically, no car maker has managed to get out of an electric powertrain quite what Tesla achieves.
It’s a different story when it comes to build quality and ‘the drive’, but Tesla is now in a rarefied position where the brand speaks more than the product. A bit like Apple. Or Dyson.
But one of the newcomers to the EV market is Ford, and Ford boss Jim Farley reckons the new Mustang Mach-E electric SUV has the measure of Tesla, boldly stating, in an interview with the Detroit Free Press, that:
The vehicle is a game changer. For me, the Mach-E is the first true competitor with Tesla. It’s got Detroit swagger. It’s a Mustang. Tesla is not a Mustang.
It’s now going to be well in to 2021 before the new Mustang Mach-E starts arriving in the UK – and probably 2022 before the Tesla Model Y arrives in the UK – but they are very close in size, price and spec and much will come down to perception of the cars when it comes to sales, and it seems Ford has got off to a good start with Mach-E sales.
Yes, for example, the Model Y Long Range AWD bests the Mustang Mach-E AWD Extended Range with around 10 per cent more range and around half a second quicker to 62mph, but there’s not a lot in it.
But perhaps where the Mustang wins is on looks and driver involvement and, for the less adventurous buyer, the steady Blue Oval rather than the flighty Tesla at the core, and a more traditional and intuitive cabin with actual buttons, not sub-menus of sub-menus to change your preferences.
So which would you pick? Tesla Model Y or Ford Mustang Mach-E?