Tesla vs Edison: Ford’s new EV division takes on Tesla
Tesla transformed the motor industry by making electric vehicles truly viable just like Ford transformed the automotive industry with its Model T. Unfortunately, Ford hasn’t been able to recreate that same fervour in the electric vehicles market, but its newest initiative could see that all change.
Ford has launched a new internal development group for EV production and its name certainly shows the company’s intentions: Edison.
Yes, that’s right, Ford’s Tesla rival is named after Nikola Tesla’s arch-nemesis and mentor Thomas Edison. It’s so good you couldn’t imagine a more hilarious department name if you tried.
It’s down to the Edison department at Ford to create the company’s future in electric vehicles. The department is so new that nothing has yet come out of it, but Ford hopes that “Team Edison” can identify and develop electric vehicle partnerships with suppliers and other companies in global markets. The team is based out of Detroit and will work with Ford’s electrification teams in China and Europe.
Amusingly, naming a development team after Edison may not be the smartest move. He may well be known as a genius inventor and serial patent filer to many Americans, history has not been so kind to him as it’s been revealed that many of his inventions, such as the light bulb and electricity-to-home, may not have actually been his doing in the first place.
Most notably of all, his electricity standard of DC (direct current) was usurped by the safer and more effective AC (alternating current) developed by George Westinghouse and made popular by Nikola Tesla’s invention of the induction motor.
So, perhaps naming your innovation house after a dubious inventor, and a rival who – arguably – lost out to Tesla isn’t a smart idea. Although given Tesla ultimately perished penniless, and Edison died a very rich man: maybe not.