Electric vehicles might be all about energy-efficiency, mileage, improved safety, and zero emissions, but it’s the industry’s obsession with speed that attracts the most attention. Earlier this month, all eyes were on Tesla, as their Model S P100D achieved a 0–60 mph time of just 2.389 seconds.
Tesla Racing Channel accomplished this astonishing feat with a stock P100D running on the latest software, which includes the Ludicrous+ software Easter Egg update released by Tesla at the end of last year. Elon Must has tweeted that a production P100D should theoretically achieve 2.34 seconds and a stripped version of the same car might go as low as 2.1 seconds. That’s bad news for the unreleased Faraday Future FF 91, another electric car that achieved 2.3 seconds, but with a heavily modified interior.
Faraday Future unveiled the FF 91 at CES in Las Vegas. The company introduced the car via a live demo and pre-recorded video footage that showed the car accelerating to 60mph in 2.39 seconds. Faraday Future pointed out that the fastest Tesla running on the same track was slower by 0.11 seconds, but that was before the Ludicrous+ update was released.
Now, the entire marketing stunt seems to have backfired at Faraday, generating even more doubts about the future of the company. This comes only a short time after the resignation of two top executives—Marco Mattiacci, chief brand and commercial officer, and Joerg Sommer, vice president for product marketing and growth. What’s more, Mattiacci and Sommer were not first high-profile people who have left the company, and judging by the recent news about Faraday’s financial difficulties, they might not be the last.
According to some sources, Faraday Future is in turmoil, with some reporters suggesting that the company is on the brink of collapse. Undeterred by the negative press attention, the company is doing what they can to project a strong image. “Despite all the naysayers and skeptics, we will persist,” said Senior VP of Engineering and R&D Nick Sampson.
Only time will tell what’s really in store for Faraday Future, but it already seems clear that poking at the large bear that is Tesla isn’t the best strategy, especially since the FF 91 is supposed to go into production in 2018. Simply showing a prototype, which might be vastly different from the actual production car, is not enough to generate market interest and give confidence to shareholders.