Ludicrous: The Unvarnished Story of Tesla Motors
Let’s say you’ve purchased a Tesla electric vehicle (EV) and you love it. Good, then you probably will not wish to read Ludicrous: The Unvarnished Story of Tesla Motors. The word “unvarnished” is a sneaky way of saying tarnished, at far as this somewhat biased account is concerned. Niedermeyer is far from being the world’s biggest fan of Elon Musk. In his words, Musk “looks heroic to his fans and desperate to his critics.” Niedermeyer is a critic who takes the position that Tesla is Musk; there’s no daylight between the man and the company.
The writer sometimes finds reluctant praise for Tesla, as when he states that Tesla has already been successful in accomplishing its mission of “accelerating the adoption of electric vehicles.” But, in his view, Tesla’s products are needlessly expensive, and the high expectations for its products “collide with Tesla’s poor quality and worse services.” Ouch!
If you do not own a Tesla, but are considering purchasing an EV built by the company or another manufacturer, Ludicrous provides some useful food for thought as well as caveats about the innovative industry. Like autonomous cars, which Niedermeyer calls hyped and “overblown,” EVs are a part of the automotive world that may be over-promising and under-delivering at the moment. And Tesla is now Target One among its more traditional competitors.
I have at least two reservations about Ludicrous. The first is that, while it’s a well-researched book, it fails at being truly fair and balanced. The second is that, at 237 pages, it is far too short for a book priced at $27.95. Let’s hope that it sells for just half that price when it’s released as a trade paperback and that it comes with a new Afterword running for 75 to 80 or so pages.
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