Elon Musk first announced his grand plan ten years ago with his ambitions for an electric car future starting with the Tesla Model S and Model X. Today he has outlined the next audacious phase of this grand electric dream.
Speaking of his “Secret Tesla Motors Master Plan”, Musk revealed that his new goal was to create solar-powered roofs with seamless battery storage “that just works”. More specifically, Musk wants the Powerwall energy storage system in homes to be fully integrated with solar power technology as one product, making energy consumption and regeneration a standalone affair.
On the transportation side Musk is looking to expand his electric vehicle portfolio to include both trucks and buses in future. The most exciting development however comes with his announcement of autonomous driving technology which aims to be ten times safer than manual driving.
Giving Uber a run for its money, Musk also dropped a bomb on the lucrative ride sharing party: “You will also be able to add your car to the Tesla shared fleet just by tapping a button on the Tesla phone app and have it generate income for you while you’re at work or on vacation, significantly offsetting and at times potentially exceeding the monthly loan or lease cost,” he said.
“This dramatically lowers the true cost of ownership to the point where almost anyone could own a Tesla.”
Those keen to find out more can head to the full blog post here or read the excerpt from Musk’s post below.
“We must at some point achieve a sustainable energy economy or we will run out of fossil fuels to burn and civilization will collapse.”
The reason we had to start off with step 1 was that it was all I could afford to do with what I made from PayPal. I thought our chances of success were so low that I didn’t want to risk anyone’s funds in the beginning but my own. The list of successful car company startups is short. As of 2016, the number of American car companies that haven’t gone bankrupt is a grand total of two: Ford and Tesla. Starting a car company is idiotic and an electric car company is idiocy squared.
Also, a low volume car means a much smaller, simpler factory, albeit with most things done by hand. Without economies of scale, anything we built would be expensive, whether it was an economy sedan or a sports car. While at least some people would be prepared to pay a high price for a sports car, no one was going to pay $100k for an electric Honda Civic, no matter how cool it looked.
Part of the reason I wrote the first master plan was to defend against the inevitable attacks Tesla would face accusing us of just caring about making cars for rich people, implying that we felt there was a shortage of sports car companies or some other bizarre rationale. Unfortunately, the blog didn’t stop countless attack articles on exactly these grounds, so it pretty much completely failed that objective.
However, the main reason was to explain how our actions fit into a larger picture, so that they would seem less random. The point of all this was, and remains, accelerating the advent of sustainable energy, so that we can imagine far into the future and life is still good. That’s what “sustainable” means. It’s not some silly, hippy thing — it matters for everyone.
By definition, we must at some point achieve a sustainable energy economy or we will run out of fossil fuels to burn and civilization will collapse. Given that we must get off fossil fuels anyway and that virtually all scientists agree that dramatically increasing atmospheric and oceanic carbon levels is insane, the faster we achieve sustainability, the better.