Tesla vs VW, Did a Recent Company Meeting Reveal VW Is Salty Over Tesla's Success?

You wouldn't expect the largest automaker to call Germany home to get flustered when foreign competition attempts to steal their market share. As it turns out, the inherent German stoicism associated with their auto industry may be more of a ruse than it may have been in the past.
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The latest insight from an admittedly fascinating profile by details how the first staff meeting at VW's headquarters might show signs that one American EV maker has VW kicking themselves. Likely more than they'd care to admit.

The meeting held on November 4th, 2021, was attended by VW CEO Herbert Diess. Diess has had less than cordial relations with German labor representatives in the last 18 months since the start of the current global health crisis.

Industry-wide resource scarcity has only made proceedings even uglier, as automakers the world over struggle to keep up with demand and fail to do so more often than not. Diess has done a decent job for VW shareholders at the very least, with its common stock, shared alongside sister company Porsche SE, is up 68% since the beginning of his tenure in 2018.

But as we should all know by now, stock value is a bad way of judging the overall health of an automaker. It's a not-so-well-kept secret that electric vehicles were not the highest priority for VW, at least initially. That was until the rise of Elon Musk's Tesla took the company completely off guard.

It's a move that's seen Tesla rise in market capitalization to a level nearly ten times that of Volkswagen. Even as VW sold multiple times as many cars this year, there's just no getting around how much Tesla embodies the future these days, and how much VW embodies the hyper-conservative past.

It's a problem VW was slow to respond to, and one that's alienated many consumers just as much as shaky labor relations have hindered so many of VW's skilled laborers, many of whom are ready to move on to other companies.

Now, long after Tesla cemented its dominance of the EV sphere, VW has also vowed to transition towards a mostly electric vehicle lineup by 2030. But now, any chance of leverage they may have had by being ahead of the EV curve is gone, likely for good.

The VW-funded Porsche Taycan, as brilliant of a driver's EV as it is, has failed to make Tesla so much as flinch in the sales department, no match for the might of the Tesla Model S and Model 3. All likely due to its late arrival to the all-electric club.

These transgressions have not gone over well with Herbert Diess in charge. Only three or so years after his tenure as CEO began, there have already been whisperings of his imminent replacement. In a company as large and expansive as VW, a power vacuum of that magnitude can only spell bad news ahead for the 80-year-old German moniker.

Special thanks to India Times for a nicely done expose. It's going to be interesting to see how VW gets on in the near future.
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