Tesla CEO Elon Musk says his company wants to lend a helping hand to other automakers struggling to catch up in the electric vehicle race. In a recent tweet, Musk said “Tesla aspires to be as helpful as possible to other car companies. We made all our patents freely available several years ago. Now, we are enabling other companies to use our Supercharger network. Also happy to license Autopilot/FSD or other Tesla technology.”
Musk’s statement comes after General Motors CEO Mary Barra admitted her company won’t have a profitable $30,000 to $40,000 electric vehicle until the end of the decade. Looks like Mary’s finally coming to terms with the fact that Tesla’s got a huge lead in affordable EVs. About time, if you ask me.
In other news, Ford CEO Jim Farley says the bringing all its software development in-house for the next wave of EVs coming out in 2025 (Ford’s Big Electric Vehicle Plans: “Bullet Train” SUV as Part of EV Strategy ). Building a whole operating system from the ground up? that sounds like a ton of work. Maybe Ford should keep Tesla’s software in their back pocket, just in case!
Last month, Musk told Ford’s Farley during a Twitter chat that open-sourcing tech could help the auto industry the way Android boosted the cell phone biz. A few years back, Tesla stunned everyone by open-sourcing all its patents. The goal? Speed up the shift to eco-friendly cars. Tesla recently took it a step further by letting other brands use its supercharger network.
Opening up Autopilot and Full Self-Driving tech could be a game-changer too. That tech is what sets Tesla apart. By sharing it, Tesla could supercharge how fast self-driving cars get here.
The big question is whether other automakers will take Tesla up on these offers. Guess? When your competition hands you the keys to catch up, you floor it! But automakers like GM and Ford have a ton of pride—and they may be too proud to accept Musk’s helping hand. If that’s the case, they’ll be eating Tesla’s dust for years to come.