KEY POINTS

  • A Ford engineer went on Reddit to criticize Tesla
  • The engineer said Tesla's engineering is "some of the worst s--t I have ever seen"
  • "Their electronics frequently flaunt safety guidelines"
  • He thinks Ford "pulled off something pretty amazing" with the Mach E 

An unidentified engineer at the Ford Motor Company currently working on the Mustang Mach-E five-door, electric crossover SUV caused a ruckus online by criticizing Tesla electric vehicles (EVs) for their horrible build quality and substandard safety features.

Posting on Reddit in an Ask Me Anything (AMA) session, this engineer made a slew of critical comments about Tesla, such as, "... their engineering is some of the worst s--t I have ever seen in any industry. It's often horrifying," but without proof. This "engineer" has since deleted his Reddit posts but what he said remains online among those fast enough to have read and saved it.

The meat of the engineer's anti-Tesla bias is Tesla isn't as good in making cars as other car companies, say, like Ford. Or, as he puts it:

"In my personal opinion, I don't think Tesla is as good at building cars, both from a design/user experience perspective and from a manufacturing/logistics/process perspective, as almost all other OEMs. Does that mean they shouldn't make cars? Hell no."

But before reaching this conclusion, the engineer starts off by saying he loves what Tesla has done for EVs, obviously referring to Tesla single-handedly making EVs the transportation mode of the future, replacing gas guzzlers. He also says Tesla's tech and battery engineering, high-voltage electronics and harnessing outpaces the industry easily by five years, as noted by Machineforum.

And, yes, Tesla's "engineering is top notch." That's because Tesla can develop custom solutions for vehicle programs other OEMs can only dream about since Tesla contract manufactures all of their parts rather than hiring auto supplier companies to design it for them. The flip side to this praise is the problems Tesla keeps facing, says this anonymous engineer.

"Simultaneously, their engineering is some of the worst s--t I have ever seen in any industry," he writes. "It's often horrifying."

He says when Ford opened a Model 3 when it first came out, the EV had loose screws randomly scattered about in the chassis near sensitive components. He ridiculed the fit and finish of the alignment of panels as "ridiculous."

"Their electronics frequently flaunt safety guidelines and do not meet UL regulations," he claims.

He then goes on to the new Lincoln battery electric vehicle (BEV) being built by Ford using the flexible skateboard platform developed by Rivian. Last week, Ford said Lincoln's first luxury BEV will use Rivian’s “flexible skateboard platform.”

The skateboard platform refers to Rivian's relatively-flat, low-center-of-gravity base chassis. It includes braking, suspension, and cooling systems with a battery in the center. The platform allows easy customization of body types mounted on it.

The engineer pointed out partnerships are becoming "more and more common, because if you spend 6 years developing a platform that is noncompetitive for long enough to recoup your losses or isn't as technologically advanced as your competitors even once, then you're done.​"

He referred to "Platforms are the new gold" and credits Tesla with building amazing custom electronics and motors. He said Ford's doing the same thing "but everyone has some catching up to do, but I think we pulled off something pretty amazing and the powertrain isn't the only reason people buy a car -- they want souls."​