Elon Musk Claims He Once Reached Out to Tim Cook About Tesla Purchase But Was Refused Meeting
Tesla CEO Elon Musk today said on Twitter that he once reached out to Apple CEO Tim Cook about the possibility of Apple acquiring Tesla, but Cook "refused to take the meeting." Musk says that he attempted to contact Apple during the "darkest days of the Model 3 program," offering Tesla for 1/10 of its value.
Musk's tweet came in response to Reuters' recent report about Apple's work on an upcoming Apple Car.
During the darkest days of the Model 3 program, I reached out to Tim Cook to discuss the possibility of Apple acquiring Tesla (for 1/10 of our current value). He refused to take the meeting. — Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 22, 2020
According to Reuters, Apple is aiming to begin production on an Apple Car by 2024, using "next-level" battery technology that involves a "monocell" design that bulks up individual battery cells and frees up space inside the battery pack by removing pouches and modules that hold battery materials. Apple is also planning to use lithium iron phosphate battery technology.
Musk in a separate tweet said that the Apple Car rumors are "strange if true" and that a monocell design is "electrochemically impossible."
Strange, if true. - Tesla already uses iron-phosphate for medium range cars made in our Shanghai factory. - A monocell is electrochemically impossible, as max voltage is ~100X too low. Maybe they meant cells bonded together, like our structural battery pack? — Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 22, 2020
There have been rumors that Apple once considered a purchase of Tesla and made a "serious bid" of $240 per share back in 2013, but given Musk's comments, that may not be accurate.
Apple and Tesla have been at odds since Apple started working on the Apple Car project and have notoriously poached employees from one another. In 2015, in fact, Musk said that he calls Apple the "Tesla Graveyard." "If you don't make it at Tesla, you go work at Apple," he said.
If and when Apple does start manufacturing a car aimed at consumers, Tesla and Apple will be direct competitors. That could happen as early as 2024 or 2025 if Apple's work on an Apple Car stays on track.