Watch Tesla's Two Founders Speak About Goals and Visions and Never Say "Autonomy"
If you think Tesla and Autopilot or Tesla and Full Self Driving (FSD) are linked at the hip, you may be thinking of the new modern Tesla. Apparently, autonomy aka self-driving wasn’t a goal, aspiration, or even on the mind of Tesla’s founders when they incorporated the company and began the epic journey.
In a video recorded 18 months ago and just uploaded by CNBC, Martin Eberhard and Marc Tarpenning discuss the days before Tesla, the days leading up to Tesla, the founding by the pair, and the early days of the company.
Interesting parts of the pre-Tesla days include how another EV company was already in business and failing. Also, these guys created an early e-reader. Which leads them to battery technology. And which leads to the thousands of individual cells that Tesla opted to go with.
Early motivation for the Tesla founding included the desire by one of the investors to have an electric sports car. Unable to purchase an EV of any type, the quest begins with a search for a solution to that desire. Later the idea of environmental leadership starts to take form. Two marketing concepts, starting with a sports car and working down market and to higher volumes is shaped by necessity and the idea of pre-orders is stumbled upon.
Yet, autonomy is never a focal point of the story. We’ve viewed it twice and can’t hear mention of self-driving cars. Perhaps we missed it. If so, tell us where and at which timestamp. If you are a Tesla fan, this is a video you will enjoy watching.
John Goreham is a long-time New England Motor Press Association member and recovering engineer. Following his engineering program, John also completed a marketing program at Northeastern University and worked with automotive component manufacturers. In addition to Torque News, John's work has appeared in print in dozens of American newspapers and he provides reviews to many vehicle shopping sites. You can follow John on Twitter, and view his credentials at Linkedin