Elon Musk - Career - Tesla Motors

Tesla Motors

Musk is also co-founder head of product design at Tesla Motors. He oversaw development of the Tesla Roadster, the first production electric car of the modern era. Musk's interest in electric vehicles extends long before the creation of Tesla. He originally went to Silicon Valley to do a PhD in Applied Physics and Materials Science at Stanford, where his goal was to create ultracapacitors with enough energy to power electric cars.

Musk began by hiring Martin Eberhard as CEO and a management team and provided almost all of the capital for Tesla's first two funding rounds, giving him a controlling interest from the start. As a result of the financial crisis in 2008 and a forced layoff at Tesla, Musk was forced to assume the additional responsibility of CEO.

Tesla Motors first built an electric sports car, the Tesla Roadster, which has shipped over 2,300 vehicles to 31 countries. Tesla began delivery of its four-door Model S sedan on 22 June 2012 and unveiled its third product the Model X, aimed at the SUV/minivan market, on 9 February 2012. Model X is scheduled to begin production in 2014. In addition to its own cars, Tesla sells electric powertrain systems to Daimler for the Smart EV and Mercedes A Class, and to Toyota for the upcoming electric RAV4. Musk was also able to bring in both companies as long term investors in Tesla.

Musk is principally responsible for an overarching business strategy that aims to deliver affordable electric vehicles to mass-market consumers. His vision was to create the Tesla Roadster as a means to that end—a car aimed specifically at affluent early adopters, whose purchase of the sports car would subsidize the research and development costs of lower priced models of electric vehicles. From the start of Tesla, Musk has been a champion of the Model S, a four-door family sedan with an anticipated base price of half that of the Roadster. Musk has also favored building a sub-$30,000 subcompact and building and selling electric vehicle powertrain components so that other automakers can produce electric vehicles at affordable prices without having to develop the products in house. Several mainstream publications have compared him with Henry Ford for his revolutionary work on advanced vehicle powertrains.

He is reported to have a 32% stake in Tesla, which is currently valued above $1 billion, as of March 2012.

Read more about this topic:  Elon Musk, Career

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