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Mercedes-Benz Launches New Car To Rival Tesla

Mercedes-Benz is unveiling on Tuesday its first all-electric model Mercedes-Benz EQC at an event in Stockholm—the first of a series of global premieres of electric vehicles by German luxury car brands to challenge Tesla in the premium EV segment.

Although its global premiere is today, the Mercedes-Benz EQC will be launched on the market in 2019 and will be the first all-electric Mercedes-Benz model from the car brand’s new product and technology brand, EQ.

Another German brand, BMW, is teasing the premiere of a new concept EV, BMW Vision iNEXT.

A third automaker, Audi, started on Monday mass production of the Audi e-tron, the brand’s first all-electric SUV. The world premiere of the e-tron will take place in Tesla’s very own backyard, San Francisco, on September 17.

The German carmakers are presenting electric vehicles that could start challenging Tesla’s market share in the premium EV sales, but analysts diverge in their opinions about just how fast and how much the German luxury brands can take away from Tesla.

According to Wajih Hossenally, an automotive powertrain analyst at IHS Markit, the arrival of German premium EV offerings would weaken Tesla’s position in the luxury segment.

“Tesla has virtually zero competition - but this will change from 2019 onwards,” the analyst told Reuters.

LMC Automotive thinks that the German car brands could exceed Tesla’s market share and hold 11.8 percent of the market in 2020. Three years later, Germany’s luxury electric vehicles share could rise to 19 percent, according to LMC Automotive forecasts, carried by Reuters.

Analysts who spoke to German newspaper Handelsblatt are less optimistic about the chances of German luxury EVs taking on Tesla in the short to medium term. Arndt Ellinghorst at Evercore ISI thinks that the first German EVs will be expensive compromises between the old and new world, while Peter Fuss, an automotive expert at consultancy EY, believes that the Germans will have success in a niche market, but noted that Tesla has a few years of head start.

By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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