Post About Tesla Robotaxi Reveal Prompts Speculation

Tesla will reveal a robot on Aug. 8, according to a social media post by the company’s founder and chief executive officer, Elon Musk. 

The announcement came late Friday as Tesla shares were sinking in the wake of a Reuters report detailing the abandonment of Musk’s long-promised affordable EV in favor of going all-in on the similarly long-promised robotaxi. 

Tesla shares have been on the decline since Jan. 1, falling as much as 33% year-to-date and marking Tesla as the worst performer in the S&P 500.

“About an hour after the market closed, Musk made his robotaxi announcement, driving shares up in after-market trading. Tesla stock climbed almost 5% in trading Monday,” according to Quartz. “It’s a tried-and-true playbook for Musk, who has frequently promised new technology and vehicles, only for products to actually materialize on the market years later.”



This isn’t the first time Musk has promised that robotaxis are nearly ready. In 2020, Musk aid it was all up to regulators.

“Functionality still looking good for this year. Regulatory approval is the big unknown,” Musk tweeted in April 2020 about Tesla robotaxis.

“The report from Reuters earlier on Friday clearly rankled Musk, who insisted that the news outlet didn’t have its facts right,” according to Gizmodo. “But the Reuters story cites numerous anonymous sources, who said the pivot away from a $25,000 vehicle to a completely autonomous taxi service would be difficult.”

Musk’s denial didn’t do the trick, so next he pulled the tweet out of his magic hat. 

"Splashy events have long been part of Tesla’s strategy to generate buzz while spending next to nothing on traditional advertising,” notes Bloomberg. “Musk has mastered the craft of keeping investors focused on the future instead of current pain points, though it usually takes years for Tesla put products that its CEO shows into production.”

There continued to be speculation among analysts over the weekend about whether the Reuters report was accurate, and if Tesla would release its robotaxi and the cheaper Model 2 in August, according to Investor’s Business Daily

Waymo, a subsidiary of Google’s parent company Alphabet, as well as General Motors subsidiary Cruise, are also working on autonomous ride-sharing services, but have hit snags. 

“Cruise has paused its testing work after one of its self-driving cars hit and dragged a pedestrian,” according to CNN Business. “An internal review found that company representatives had failed to be fully open with regulators about the incident. The company is being investigated by the Department of Justice over the incident. Waymo recently had to recall its own cars after two of its cars hit the same tow truck within minutes of one another.”

Next story loading loading..