Although we likely won’t see driverless cars on the roads for at least another decade or two, there’s a chance that the first driverless cars we do see will be electric. Bloomberg reports that Tesla CEO Elon Musk “has talked with Google about the self-driving technology it’s been developing, though he prefers to think of applications that are more like an airplane’s autopilot system.” While Musk has been impressed with what Google has done with driverless cars so far, he did say that the company’s current approach of using sensors is “too expensive” and that “it’s better to have an optical system, basically cameras with software that is able to figure out what’s going on just by looking at things.” Musk said that Tesla would work on its own autopilot system for its cars, although he provided no information about when Tesla’s own system would be ready for road tests.
As of yesterday, no American car company had gone public since Henry Ford put his family business on the on the U.S. stock exchange back in 1956. Today, Tesla Motors (TSLA) — in an IPO — sold over 13.3 million shares of stock on the NASDAQ exchange totaling $226.1 million. The all-electric car maker’s mission is simply to “sell high performance, super efficient electric cars.” Tesla uses some pretty impressive technology to manage, store and harness the electric charge stored in the cars batteries. The company should have their first mass production model — The Model S — rolling off the assembly line this year. The company’s stock closed just south of $24. More →
If you thought breaking up over a text message was in bad taste, try empathizing with the Tesla employees who were just laid off… via a blog post! That’s right, 90% of the Tesla team in Metro Detroit were let go, but someone assigned to break the news didn’t have the guts to tell them. Instead, the employees found out through their own site that they were finished. What’s to become of the remaining 10%? Those who aren’t notified of their termination today (via a bulletin board at the plant, mind you) have to relocate to San Jose, CA – at least it’s brighter and the weather is more temperate in Cali, right? The problem is getting there when your company won’t help with relocation, moving costs, selling your current home or apartment, or anything else for that matter. They’re essentially being told, “Be glad we didn’t can you. Now get moving!” The official word is as follows:
There will also be some headcount reduction due to consolidation of operations. In anticipation of moving vehicle engineering to our new HQ in San Jose, we are ramping down and will close our Rochester Hills office near Detroit. Good communication, tightly knit engineering and a common company culture are of paramount importance as Tesla grows.
Yes, “good communication” and a “common company culture” are of paramount importance. We’re wondering what the schmuck who wrote this piece was thinking when writing that there would be a “headcount reduction.” With tough times and an economy suffering at exponential rates, one would think that Tesla could have been just a tad more appropriate and tactful with letting their hard working employees go.