Porsche’s Mission E electric sedan is set to go into production in late 2019, and although many car enthusiasts are hyping the all-electric vehicle as a direct competitor to Tesla’s Model S, the German automaker suggests otherwise.
“Tesla is not a benchmark for us,” Porsche CEO Oliver Blume said at the company’s annual press conference earlier this month. Instead, Blume sees the Mission E as a trailblazer for the mass appeal of e-vehicles. “It will set standards and will represent motion in more than one sense. The only things that the Mission E will not offer are boredom and forbearance.”
Yahoo Canada was invited to the automaker’s annual state of the union conference, followed by a tour of their facilities in Zuffenhausen, just outside of Stuttgart, Germany, to get a better idea of where the final production of the Mission E models will be assembled. The existing plant is being expanded to incorporate the newly created production facility (a factory within a factory, so to speak) to produce the fleet of electric vehicles.
And Porsche is backing up their vision with loads of money.
By 2025, the company expects to put more than 80 new car models with e-motors on the market, including 50 pure e-cars and 30 plug-in hybrids. The automaker plans to invest US$7.4 billion over the next four years into electro-mobility, with about US$619 million going toward the development of electric vehicles under the Mission E program.
But, could it surpass the Tesla?
Porsche Mission E vs. Tesla Model S — how they measure up:
The Mission E four-seat electric sedan is expected to accelerate from 0-to-60 mph in 3.5 seconds, covering 310 miles on a single charge battery with no loss of performance. In comparison, Tesla’s flagship Model S can do 0-to-60 mph in 2.8 seconds in Ludicrous Mode — although according to Stefan Weckbach, Head of Battery Electric Vehicles at Porsche, this can only be done twice by the Model S and “the third attempt will fail.”
One of the main differences between the Mission E and its competitors will be the charging time. With an 800-volt battery, it can recover 80 percent of a battery charge in just 15 minutes for a journey of around 400 kilometres — that’s half the time of the Tesla.
Earlier this year, Tesla began charging Model 3 owners fees for access to the Supercharger (fast-charging) network — a perk that used to be free. When asked about it in a roundtable discussion with GearBrain, Porsche said it will start charging for electricity from the beginning, and that costs will be similar to refuelling with gas.
Tesla’s Supercharger network boasts 1,191 Supercharger Stations with 9,184 Superchargers. While Porsche will become a member of Ionity — a joint venture with Audi, the BMW Group, Daimler AG, and Ford — to construct 400 rapid charging stations along the major European traffic routes by 2020. In the U.S., the automaker is installing 800-volt fast-chargers at its 189 dealerships.
The Mission E sedan is expected to be priced between an entry-level Panamera and 911 Carrera, so expect base costs to range from US$85,000 to US$91,100. In comparison, the 2018 Tesla Model S 75D starts at US$74,500.