Volkswagen Says It Wants to Overtake Tesla and Become the Leader in Electric Cars

May 8, 2017, 8:59 AM UTC

Volkswagen (VLKAY) has said that it is confident it can “leapfrog” Tesla (TSLA) to become the world leader in the electric vehicles market.

The German automaker has set itself an ambitious target of one million electric car sales by 2025, according to the Financial Times. Tesla had already pledged to build one million vehicles by 2020.

At a press conference, head of the VW brand Herbert Diess said that the company would concentrate on improving profitability by cutting costs and enhancing productivity before 2020, after which it will shift focus to manufacturing electric vehicles.

Diess said that Volkswagen will be able to use “leapfrogging cost advantages” to profitably sell electric cars at the same price as diesel models go for today. Although it has traditionally offered higher-end vehicles, Tesla’s more affordable new Model 3 is targeted toward the mass-market.

Although he acknowledged that the U.S. automaker “is a competitor we take seriously,” Deiss declared that “anything Tesla can do, we can surpass.”