Ferrari CEO Takes a Tesla for a Test Drive

Electric cars are known for ferocious acceleration, and so are Ferraris. Ferrari CEO Sergio Marchionne took a Tesla for a spin, and acceleration aside, he found it wanting.

Indeed, he called it “obscene.”

Context matters, of course. According to a CNN report, Marchionne called the experience – presumably in a Model S – “obscene” because there was no engine noise. Ferraris, are of course well-known for having a melodious exhaust note.

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An electric Tesla barely makes any motor noise, and what it does produce is the not the same thing that would be emitted by the internal-combustion engine of a high-end sports car.

“This is not Ferrari,” Marchionne told CNN , adding he had to turn up the radio to counteract the silence.

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Marchionne also made it clear that autonomous cars are not in Ferrari’s future, because Ferrari is a brand that places an emphasis on the joys of driving.

“You’ll have to shoot me first,” Marchionne told the press.

Teslas have shown their ability to hold their own against Ferraris, as a drag race between a Tesla Model X crossover and a Ferrari F430 showed. The Model X, which can accelerate from 0-60 in 3.2 seconds, lost the race but held its own against the Ferrari.

Even Ferrari’s competition is getting in on the EV game, at least to an extent – think of Porsche and the Mission E – but the maker from Maranello that Marchionne oversees will remain on the sidelines, at least when it comes to pure EVs as opposed to hybrids, and seems content to do so as long he’s the boss, despite rumors that the company has been working on developing another hybrid to go along with the LaFerrari.