In a move to boost the presence of electric vehicles in the marketplace, Tesla Motors announced on June 12 that it is offering the proprietary technology, which powers of its Model S electric car, to any automaker that wants to produce electric vehicles. Tesla Motors is hopeful that the move will spark up the development of electric vehicles, which currently represent a measly less than 1% share of the car and light truck market.
Many prospective car buyer is seduced by the sleek, high-tech vehicle at first glance; however, that interest is shattered for many by the base price of $71,000. Hopefully, the move will facilitate the production of less pricey electrocars for the masses. Tesla notes that BMW AG has already expressed an interest in sharing certain patents. However, the Bavarian automaker is not noted for producing inexpensive vehicles. Beyond that, BMW has a significant interest in producing electric vehicles.
One topic under discussion with BMW is the sharing of Tesla’s technology for rapidly recharging batteries, which is a component of the automaker’s supercharging stations. Palo Alto-based Tesla offered another reason for sharing its technology: the achievement of greater economies of scale. This concept segues into the sharing of the supercharging stations. This would spread the cost of the facilities between author electric car manufacturers; thus, facilitating the construction of additional stations. Another technology that Tesla is willing to share is its use of small battery cells. Together with that concept, Tesla plans to build a large battery factory to increase the supply of battery packs in the United States.
Tesla currently holds several hundred patents related to all elements of its electric vehicles, including batteries and electric control systems. Thus, Tesla is not concerned that a competitor could use its patents to undercut the company’s prices. It is not interested in other automakers cloning their product; rather, they are hopeful that patent-sharers will develop their own unique product line.
Although the market share for eco-friendly vehicles is small, it will undoubtedly grow. In addition, competition is keen between hybrid vehicles and all-electrics such as the Tesla. In addition, hydrogen fuel cells is another expanding area. For example, on June 11, Hyundai Motor America presented the keys of first mass-produced hydrogen fuel cell vehicle, the Tucson Fuel Cell CUV, to a Huntington Beach, California resident.