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5 Ways Tesla Is Transforming the Auto Industry

No matter what you think of Tesla, it’s difficult not to admire what the start-up electric-vehicle maker has accomplished since the Model S was released in June 2012. In that short time, established and competitor car companies have had to take Tesla seriously as it’s racked up a string of awards and successes and grabbed a surprising amount of market share in the luxury category. And as Tesla prepares to launch a less expensive model, mainstream brands will also feel threatened.

An automotive analyst recently cited five ways in which Tesla is pushing technological change in the automotive industry. And while I don’t agree with his list (since only two of the five ways are not exclusive to Tesla), I concur with his premise that Tesla is forcing other automakers to reexamine how in-car tech is being implemented.

Home of the Model S
Charge Me Up, Scotty
The Roadster Less Traveled
Climb Aboard
Star Tour
Hitting the Road
Really Big Screen
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But I’d take it even further and say that Tesla is also transforming the car driving, ownership, and buying experience. So I came up with my own list (that starts with the two I agree on with the analyst):

1. Large center-dash touch-screen display: Even though the Model S has been out for almost two years, no other automaker offers the extra-large in-dash touch screen that’s become a Tesla trademark. While it can be debated that the screen is too large, too bright, and too distracting, the appeal of such a large interface is undeniable. And it’s bound to be copied: We’ve already seen the idea of a vertical rather than horizontal main in-dash touch screen copied by Volvo for its upcoming infotainment interface.

2. Over-the-air software updates
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