Ford is about to begin deliveries of its first electric vehicle, the Mustang Mach-E. Even though they haven’t landed in the hands of customers just yet, the automaker is feeling confident it can be a Tesla contender.
In a recent interview with Autoblog, Ford’s EV boss Darren Palmer took a bit of a veiled shot at Tesla. When asked if Mach-E owners will have to compromise on quality, Palmer said, “the doors fit properly, the plastics and other materials color-match, the bumpers don’t fall off, the roof doesn’t come off when you wash it, the door handles don’t get stuck in cold weather.”
Even though Palmer didn’t mention Tesla by name, it is clear he is talking about their biggest EV rival. During the Model 3 production ramp, quality issues were well publicized with new owners having to deal with panel gap and alignment issues.
Similar issues continued into the production of the Model Y electric SUV, the Mach-E’s main competitor. Many owners who purchased a white Model Y complained the bumper and quarter panels weren’t the same shade of white.
What Palmer doesn’t realize, or want to admit, is that even with quality issues, it is the entire ownership experience that makes Tesla owners love their cars. This was borne out in two surveys by J.D Power. Tesla ranked dead last in their Initial Quality Study, but scored 896 out of a possible 1,000 points in their Automotive Performance, Execution and Layout (APEAL) study.
Early reviews of the Mach-E have for the most part been positive. Hopefully that continues with the first customers, as any EV on the road is one less internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicle on the road, and that’s the ultimate goal.