Elon Musk pulled his ‘last remaining house’ off the market after vowing to get rid of all his ‘physical possessions’ last year

Elon Musk
Elon Musk on August 13, 2021 at a press event on the grounds of the Tesla Gigafactory near Berlin.

  • Musk listed his Bay Area mansion for $37.5 million in June in a quest to offload all his property.
  • The listing was pulled down last week, according to Zillow records.
  • The billionaire pledged to sell “all physical possessions” in 2020 to fund the colonization of Mars.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Elon Musk almost followed through on his pledge to sell off his entire $100 million real-estate portfolio.

In June, Musk said that he offloaded all his houses – except for one home in the California Bay Area that he rented out for events.

“Decided to sell my last remaining house,” Musk tweeted about the home in June. “Just needs to go to a large family who will live there,” he wrote.

Zillow records show that the home was listed for sale by owner on June 13 for $37.5 million. The listing was then removed by owner on September 11, according to Zillow and first reported by the New York Post.

Elon Musk's Bay Area home in a Zillow listing.
Zillow listing for 891 Crystal Springs Rd, Hillsborough, CA.

The listing touted that the sprawling 1961 mansion has 16,000 square feet of interior space and sits on 47 acres in Hillsborough, California. The home has an 11-car garage, a ballroom, 10 bathrooms for just six bedrooms, and access to hiking trails. “It’s a special place,” Musk wrote in a June tweet.

He purchased the property for just over $23 million in 2017 from Christian de Guigne IV, whose aristocratic family owned the property for over a century.

While there seemed to have been no active push to sell the property as it was listed without an agent, the couple months the home spent on the market speak to Musk’s larger plan to offload all his assets.

In May 2020, Musk tweeted that he planned to sell “almost all physical possessions” and would “own no house.”

He is dedicating as much money as he can to colonizing Mars, and is selling his material possessions to fund this, he told Mathias Döpfner, the CEO of Insider’s parent company, Axel Springer, in a December interview. He’s already sold a smattering of homes in the Bel-Air neighborhood of Los Angeles, including a $7 million home that once belonged to the actor Gene Wilder and a $29 million mansion snapped up by a Chinese billionaire.

“It’s going to take a lot of resources to build a city on Mars,” Musk told Döpfner. “I want to be able to contribute as much as possible to the city,” he continued. “That means just a lot of capital.”

Musk tweeted that his current primary residence is a prefab tiny home worth $50,000 in Boca Chica, Texas, that he rents from SpaceX, his aerospace company.

SpaceX completed the world’s first all-tourist flight to orbit this weekend, opening the door to private space tourism and Musk’s ultimate vision for the company.

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A suspected drunk Tesla driver has been arrested after allegedly passing out while on Autopilot

A close-up red Tesla logo on a white background.
A Californian couple said that their Tesla Model S caught fire and caused a house fire.

  • A Telsa driver was arrested on suspicion of drunken driving after she crashed into a California freeway wall.
  • The woman, identified as Karla Villanueva, had reportedly passed out while driving on Autopilot.
  • Her husband, who was driving behind her, reported that his wife was unconscious” in her car.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

A Telsa driver was arrested on suspicion of drunken driving after she crashed into a Southern California freeway wall on Thursday, authorities said.

The woman, identified as Karla Villanueva, reportedly passed out while driving her Tesla on Autopilot, the Associated Press reported.

Villanueva’s Tesla hit a wall late on Thursday night and then continued to move until a California Highway Patrol car pulled in front of her, which then slowed and stopped it. Authorities proceeded to wake up Villanueva.

Her husband, who was driving behind her, reported to the dispatcher that his wife was “unconscious in a Tesla” and that the vehicle was “driving itself,” according to audio from a dispatch call obtained by KABC-TV.

Villanueva was arrested Thursday and released Friday on her recognizance.

She is due in court in January 2022. It wasn’t immediately clear whether she had an attorney to speak on her behalf.

In recent months, Tesla crashes have come under scrutiny after several fatal crashes occurred while the electric cars were on Autopilot, enabling the vehicle to steer, accelerate, and brake automatically within its lane.

At least three Tesla drivers have died since 2016 while driving with Autopilot engaged.

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6 buggy examples of Tesla’s Full Self-Driving software that show why drivers have to be ready to take over on a second’s notice

The interior of a Tesla driving down the highway
  • Tesla rolled out version 10 of its Full Self-Driving software earlier this month.
  • Since, videos of the FSD update have shown several instances when the car has acted wonky.
  • Elon Musk said on Friday the company has received positive feedback on the update.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Since Tesla rolled out version 10 of its “Full Self-Driving” software earlier this month, beta testers have taken to the internet to point out issues they’ve noticed.

While Tesla CEO Elon Musk has said the update will “blow your mind,” some drivers are less convinced than others. From turning into oncoming traffic to attempting to drive into pedestrians and bikers, some beta testers showed Tesla’s “Full Self-Driving” software has a ways to go before it’s ready to operate without the guidance of a licensed driver.

The software appears to struggle with accommodating light rails

In a video that has since been taken down, a beta tester known on YouTube as HyperChange tested out the update. While he said his experience was overall positive, in the video that was designed to test FSD’s ability to navigate around Seattle’s Monorail the Tesla at one point nearly turned right into a group of pedestrians crossing the street.

Another driver had a similar experience when he tested the FSD near the San Jose Light Rail. In AI Addict’s video, the Tesla attempted to turn right and completely skidded over a curb. The driver pointed out that the software turned right without taking the light rail into consideration, as the rail took up the right side of the street and forced the car further left in its turn.

There were multiple examples of the car turning into oncoming traffic

In a video from a YouTuber known as Frenchie, the autonomous software put the car into the wrong lane, facing oncoming traffic during a bidirectional left turn.

Another beta tester Kim Paquette saw similar issues with version 10. During two separate drives, her Tesla tried to drive into oncoming traffic at intersections and during turns. At each instance, Paquette was forced to disengage the software and stop the car from rolling into oncoming traffic.

“It is failing at tasks it was able to do previously, like sharing [the] road for oncoming traffic on narrow streets, unprotected lefts with diagonal cross traffic,” Paquette wrote on YouTube.

FSD becomes “jerky” when the car is “unsure”

Frenchie pointed out several instances during his drive when the car acted erratically when it entered situations involving roadblocks, pedestrians, or car’s hanging too far out of their lane.

“This is what I want to avoid,” he said in the video. “This kind of jerkiness when it’s unsure.”

Paquette’s video also showed a moment when the car starts diving back and forth in its lane when it encountered people on bicycles.

“It’s like it’s trying to get away from them to give the bikers space, but then also trying to dart back in between them,” Paquette said in the video.

Version 10 was pushed out to beta testers earlier this month and is not yet available for regular drivers. Though, Musk said on Friday that new beta testers could sign up through a beta button. He also said the company has received positive feedback on the update and is rolling out version 10.0.1.

Tesla did not respond to a request for comment on the bug reports.

Despite the bugs, many Tesla beta testers are reporting that the system is getting better, especially when it comes to decision making. The update also spawned compliments over updated self-driving graphics.

Earlier this year, Insider’s Tim Levin reported that Tesla’s earlier FSD software was confusing burger king signs and even the moon with stop signs and stop lights.

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From Tesla to Netflix: These are the companies that look set to join the ‘$1 trillion club’ in the next 5 years

Tesla CEO Elon Musk
Tesla CEO Elon Musk.

  • Tencent, Netflix, Berkshire Hathaway, and Visa are among companies headed towards the trillion-dollar stock market valuation, a study shows.
  • The study compared the market cap of the 50 biggest public companies along with their average annual growth.
  • Estimates for Chinese firms do not factor in Beijing’s most recent regulatory crackdowns.
  • Sign up here for our daily newsletter, 10 Things Before the Opening Bell.

Tesla, Netflix, and Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway are among 16 companies in the race to hit the $1 trillion mark within the next five years, according to a recent study by cloud-based procurement solutions provider Approve.com.

Facebook became the fifth US company to join the $1 trillion club in late June this year, joining other tech leaders such as Apple, Microsoft, Amazon, and Google parent Alphabet to achieve that milestone. Oil producer Saudi Aramco is the only non-US company in the exclusive club.

Approve.com analyzed the market caps of the 50 biggest publicly-listed companies alongside their average annual growth to find which ones could hit the 13-digit mark the quickest. The analysis, published in July, showed that even more tech companies are set to dominate the trillion-dollar zone.

Projections made for Chinese-based companies in this study are based on annual growth rates, and don’t include the impact of the recent regulatory crackdowns. These companies have had a turbulent year, ever since Beijing began to tighten its grip on services that were abruptly presented with new compliance challenges.

Here are the 16 companies on track to reach a $1 trillion-dollar valuation by 2026:

1. Tesla

Tesla Roadster.

Market Cap: $754 billion
Sector: Automotive (US)
Estimated year to hit $1 trillion: 2022
Average annual growth rate: 123.87%

2. Tencent


Market Cap: $569 billion
Sector: Technology (China)
Estimated year to hit $1 trillion: 2022
Average annual growth rate: 97.04%

3. Comcast

comcast building

Market Cap: $263 billion
Sector: Telecommunications (US)
Estimated year to hit $1 trillion: 2023
Average annual growth rate: 186.93%


4. Meituan

Visitors look at a Meituan Autonomous Delivery (MAD) vehicle of Chinese food delivery platform Meituan-Dianping, at the first Smart China Expo in Chongqing, China August 23, 2018. Picture taken August 23, 2018. REUTERS/Stringer

Market Cap: $179 billion
Sector: E-commerce (China)
Estimated year to hit $1 trillion: 2023
Average annual growth rate: 115.74%

5. Nvidia

nvidia employees

Market Cap: $555 billion
Sector: Technology (US)
Estimated year to hit $1 trillion: 2024
Average annual growth rate: 48.27%

6. Kweichow Moutai

A rare collection of Kweichow Moutai baijiu that features sunflower logos instead of the usual flying fairy.

Market Cap: $317 billion
Sector: Alcohol (China)
Estimated year to hit $1 trillion: 2024
Average annual growth rate: 48.6%

7. Netflix


Market Cap: $257 billion
Sector: Entertainment (US)
Estimated year to hit $1 trillion: 2024
Average annual growth rate: 74.16%

8. Alibaba Group

jack ma
Jack Ma.

Market Cap: $433 billion
Sector: Technology (China)
Estimated year to hit $1 trillion: 2025
Average annual growth rate: 19.16%

9. Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company

A logo of Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC) is seen at its headquarters in Hsinchu, Taiwan October 5, 2017. REUTERS/Eason Lam

Market Cap: $620 billion
Sector: Semiconductors (Taiwan)
Estimated year to hit $1 trillion: 2025
Average annual growth rate: 16.05%

10. Visa


Market Cap: $492 billion
Sector: Financial Services
Estimated year to hit $1 trillion: 2025
Average annual growth rate: 22.32%

11. Mastercard


Market Cap: $342 billion
Sector: Financial Services (US)
Estimated year to hit $1 trillion: 2025
Average annual growth rate: 32.15%

12. PayPal

GettyImages 1232621646

Market Cap: $332 billion
Sector: Financial Services (US)
Estimated year to hit $1 trillion: 2025
Average annual growth rate: 43.71%

13. Berkshire Hathaway

Warren Buffett

Market Cap: $635 billion
Sector: Investment (US)
Estimated year to hit $1 trillion: 2026
Average annual growth rate: 10.49%

14. Samsung

Samsung Galaxy Fold Z 2 5G

Market Cap: $444 billion
Sector: Technology (South Korea)
Estimated year to hit $1 trillion: 2026
Average annual growth rate: 19.24%

15. LVMH


Market Cap: $372 billion
Sector: Luxury Goods (France)
Estimated year to hit $1 trillion: 2026
Average annual growth rate: 22.78%

16. Salesforce

Salesforce San Francisco

Market Cap: $250 billion
Sector: Software (US)
Estimated year to hit $1 trillion: 2026
Average annual growth rate: 40.67%

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Tesla is reversing its enormous Solar Roof price hikes for some customers, court documents show

Tesla CEO Elon Musk
Tesla CEO Elon Musk.

  • In April, Tesla increased prices on its Solar Roof for customers waiting on installation.
  • A customer whose roof price went up by $75,000 filed a class-action lawsuit.
  • Tesla’s lawyers said the company will help some customers return to the original pricing.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Tesla Solar Roof customers who got hit with massive price hikes in April might be able to get their original price-points back, according to a court document published Thursday.

The document, as spotted by CNBC, is from a class-action case filed against Tesla in May by Matthew Amans, a customer who got hit with a $75,000 price hike.

In June 2020 Amans signed up to have a Tesla Solar Roof installed on his house. In March 2021, he agreed to pay $71,662.06. Over the weekend of April 10, Tesla jacked the price up to $146,462.22.

Amans wasn’t alone, Tesla Solar Customers customers who had signed a contract but not had their roof installed were hit with price hikes.

A document from Amans’ case filed Thursday said Tesla’s lawyers informed the plaintiffs’ lawyers on Monday that the company plans to let some customers have their original prices back.

The filing says: “Counsel for Tesla informed counsel for Plaintiffs that Tesla had recently launched a program for customers who signed Solar Roof contracts before the April 2021 price changes to return those customers to their original pricing (if they were subject to a price increase in April 2021).”

Tesla CEO Elon Musk said during an earnings call in April the company had made “significant mistakes” in calculating how much it should charge customers for the Solar Roof, resulting in the price hikes.

The Solar Roof is the flagship product of Tesla’s solar energy division. Rather than installing panels on top of a customer’s roof, it is made up of individual shingles, which are also solar cells.

Tesla did not immediately reply when contacted by Insider for comment. Tesla’s attorneys were listed as having signed the document.

Do you work at Tesla Energy? Contact this reporter at ihamilton@insider.com or iahamilton@protonmail.com. Always use a non-work email.

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2 of Tesla’s most promising rivals are picking up steam

Rivian R1T
The Rivian R1T pickup.

  • Lucid and Rivian are two of the startups best suited to challenge Tesla.
  • They both seem to be hitting their stride.
  • Both companies are on the brink of delivering their first vehicles.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Tesla has dominated the US electric car market for years as the sole startup that’s managed to mass-produce EVs and keep the lights on. Today, Elon Musk’s automaker hardly qualifies as an startup anymore (it’s worth some $750 billion), but a growing number of new manufacturers think they can replicate Tesla’s success.

Two contenders have risen to the top of the heap as their years-long efforts finally start to pay off. Lucid Motors and Rivian have both been making strides as of late and are set to start delivering their debut vehicles in 2021.

Rivian, which is working on a pickup truck and a Range Rover-esque luxury SUV, announced Tuesday that its vehicles are certified for sale in all 50 states and that its first customer-ready R1T pickups rolled had rolled off the production line in Normal, Illinois. Rivian’s first saleable vehicle comes more than a decade after CEO RJ Scaringe founded the company in 2009.

Earlier in September, the Environmental Protection Agency rated Rivian’s SUV and pickup at an impressive 316 and 314 miles of range, respectively.

Lucid Air exterior_5
The Lucid Air.

Rivian plans to start shipping R1T Launch Edition trucks to preorder holders by the end of September, followed by its first R1S SUVs later this fall. It confidentially filed for an IPO in August and is aiming to go public around November, Bloomberg reported.

It’s reportedly seeking a valuation of roughly $80 billion, more than Ford or General Motors.

Lucid, for its part, recently made good on its longstanding promise to build the longest-range EV on the market. The EPA on Wednesday gave its debut vehicle – the Air Dream Edition R sedan – a range rating of 520 miles. It’s a staggering rating, and no production EV has even come close to delivering that sort of mileage between charge-ups.

The Tesla Model S, which has led the market in battery range for years, can travel 405 miles on a full battery, according to EPA estimates.

Lucid has already begun building preproduction cars at its factory in Arizona and says it will start shipping the $169,000 Air Dream Edition to preorder holders later in 2021. The company is taking a page out of Tesla’s playbook by starting with a super-premium vehicle and working toward more affordable offerings, including a $77,400 base model of the Air and a small SUV called the Gravity.

Some on Wall Street are optimistic about Lucid’s potential to challenge Tesla and legacy automakers alike. In a Wednesday note to investors, Bank of America analysts called Lucid potentially the next Tesla or Ferrari, noting that it is “a relative competitive threat to the universe of incumbent automakers, with innovative technology, attractive product, compelling brand, clean sheet manufacturing approach, and impressive management experience.”

Shares of Lucid have risen 18.5% since Wednesday, and are up some 130% year-to-date.

Still, mass-producing cars is a notoriously tricky and expensive business. And just because Lucid and Rivian are able to start delivering vehicles to customers, that doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll be able to do it for long. Tesla famously had numerous brushes with failure and financial disaster on its way to the top.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Tesla could soar 32% in the next year as chip-shortage woes subside and global demand rebounds, Wedbush says

Tesla Model S Plaid sedan
Tesla Model S Plaid.

  • Wedbush’s Dan Ives reiterated his $1,000 12-month price target for Tesla on Friday.
  • The analyst expects a number of concerns including the chip shortage and PR issues in China to subside.
  • He sees Telsa’s stock benefitting from the oncoming “green tidal wave” of demand for EV’s over the next five years.
  • Sign up here for our daily newsletter, 10 Things Before the Opening Bell.

One of Wall Street’s biggest Tesla bulls is doubling down on his optimism for the stock despite 2021’s underwhelming performance.

In a Friday note to clients, Wedbush’s Dan Ives reiterated his 12-month price target of $1,000 for the electric vehicle maker’s stock, representing 32% jump from current levels.

After a record 740% rally in 2020, Tesla has eked out a mere 3% gain so far this year. Ives blamed a number of issues for the underperformance, including the lingering semi-conductor chip shortage, safety concerns in China, regulatory concerns, and rising electric vehicle competition.

“That said, seeing the forest through the trees we believe Tesla has a number of growth levers into 2022 that should accelerate growth and profitability with global EV demand further inflecting over the next 12 to 18 months,” said Ives. “We continue to believe there are many winners in the EV arms race to play this transformational growth opportunity including traditional stalwarts and pure play EV OEMs/supply chain plays with Tesla front and center.”

Ives has long said that demand in China is a key driver for Tesla’s growth. But 2021 has been a tough year for the EV maker’s reputation in China, mired with a fatal crash, safety recalls, and CEO Elon Musk being forced to reject reports the country’s military had banned its cars.

According to Ives, those headwinds in China are beginning to reverse course, and Tesla is on track to hit 900,000 annual deliveries in 2021. While electric vehicles only represent 3% of the overall automobile industry globally, he sees that share growing to 10% by 2025 as countries move towards reducing carbon emissions. This will result in a boom of demand for electric vehicles, and Tesla’s stock is poised to benefit, he said.

The analyst also explained that the semiconductor chip shortage is a “near-term” issue that the company will be able to get past.

Shares of Tesla slipped 0.15% on Friday after the opening bell.

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Southwest Airlines announces 8 new routes in its latest expansion as airlines ramp up focus on Austin – see the full list

Southwest Airlines Boeing 737
A Southwest Airlines Boeing 737-700.

  • Southwest Airlines announced eight new routes on Thursday, six of which focus on Austin, Texas.
  • Austin, dubbed “Silicon Hills,” has become increasingly popular for tech giants from California.
  • Southwest will operate two new routes outside of Texas, including service from Colorado to Mexico.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Southwest Airlines announced eight new routes on Thursday in its latest network expansion, six of which will be to Austin, Texas, the state’s latest tech giant.

Business and leisure travelers will get more options to and from Austin starting in March 2022, including up to 105 departures per day serving 46 destinations across the United States and Mexico, according to Southwest. In addition to its stacked service to Austin, the airline will begin two routes outside of the Lone Star State, including Albuquerque to Burbank and Denver to Cozumel, Mexico.

Austin has become a popular tech destination for Silicon Valley giants like Tesla, which chose the Texas capital, now referred to as the “Silicon Hills,” as the location for its $1 billion factory that will build its highly-anticipated Cybertruck.

Southwest has been Austin’s leading carrier for over three decades, accounting for about 34% of the airport’s total passenger traffic in the first half of 2021, according to data from Austin-Bergstrom International Airport.

Southwest isn’t the only carrier entering the booming Austin market. In March, American Airlines added 10 routes to the central Texas city, connecting cities that formerly required a layover in one of the carrier’s hubs, like Chicago or Miami. Meanwhile, Delta Air Lines, Spirit Airlines, and Allegiant Air have also bolstered operations in Austin, with Delta making it a focus city.

Here are the eight new routes Southwest will start next spring.

Between Austin and Amarillo, Texas

Aerial View of Downtown Amarillo, Texas
Amarillo, Texas

Southwest will fly once daily from Austin to Amarillo beginning March 10. On weekdays and Sundays, the outbound will be an evening departure with an early morning return. Saturday service will depart in the early afternoon with a late morning return. The airline currently faces no competition on the route.

Between Austin and Charleston, South Carolina

Downtown Charleston Shops
Charleston, South Carolina

Southwest’s once-daily flight from Austin to Charleston will start on March 10. The outbound will be an afternoon departure with a morning return. Like Amarillo, Southwest will be the route’s only operator.

Between Austin and Columbus, Ohio

Columbus ohio
Columbus, Ohio

Southwest’s Austin to Columbus route will run on select peak travel days in 2021, but daily nonstop service will begin on March 10. On weekdays and Sundays, the once-daily flight will depart from both cities in the morning, while the Saturday service will offer an afternoon departure both ways. No airlines serve the route, leaving Southwest with no competition.

Between Austin and Midland-Odessa, Texas

Midland Texas
Midland, Texas

Southwest will fly a once-daily evening flight from Austin to Midland starting March 10. The evening outbound will operate on weekdays and Sundays with an early morning return. Meanwhile, Saturdays will operate an early afternoon departure out of both cities. Southwest will face no competition on the short intrastate hop.

Between Austin and Ontario, California

Ontario, California
Ontario, California

Southwest will launch a once-daily flight from Austin to Ontario on March 10. An afternoon outbound and morning return will be offered on the route. Southwest will not face direct competition on the Ontario route, though Delta, Alaska, and United serve nearby Los Angeles from Austin.

Between Austin and Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

puerto vallarta
Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

Southwest’s Saturday-only service between Austin and Puerto Vallarta will begin on March 12, pending government approval. The flight schedule is not yet available. The airline will directly compete with American on the route, which currently operates a thrice-weekly flight using Boeing 737 aircraft.

Between Albuquerque, New Mexico, and Burbank, California

Burbank, California
Burbank, California

Southwest will operate a once-daily flight from Albuquerque to Burbank beginning January 17. The flight will operate in the evening every day and return in the early afternoon. No other carriers operate the route.

Between Denver, Colorado, and Cozumel, Mexico

Cozumel, Mexico
Cozumel, Mexico

Southwest’s Saturday-only service between Denver and Cozumel will begin March 12, pending government approval. The morning outbound will depart at 10:15 a.m. and land at 3:15 p.m. and the afternoon return will leave at 4:10 p.m. and land at 7:35 p.m. Southwest will face competition from United and Frontier on this route.

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EV start-up Rivian has beaten other industry giants to become the first automaker to produce an electric pickup

Rivian R1T.
Rivian’s R1T has an estimated range of 314 miles.

  • Rivian produced its first electric pickup Tuesday – becoming the first automaker to do so.
  • A Rivian spokesperson said its vehicles were “ready for sale in all 50 states.”
  • The R1T has an estimated range of 314 miles and prices start at $67,500.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

California-based electric vehicle startup Rivian has become the first automaker to produce an electric pickup truck.

“After months of building pre-production vehicles, this morning our first customer vehicle drove off our production line in Normal [Illinois],” CEO RJ Scaringe tweeted on Tuesday.

A Rivian spokesperson told Bloomberg that the company’s vehicles were “ready for sale in all 50 states” after receiving full certifications from three regulators – the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the California Air Resource Board.

Deliveries of the R1T, Rivian’s electric pickup, are set to begin in January 2022, according to its website, after an initial delay earlier this summer. It has an estimated range of 314 miles, and comes with an air compressor, a built-in cooler under the bed, and a tailgate you can control through an app.

Rivian R1T pickup truck
Rivian R1T.

Rivian’s completion of the R1T beat out the release of several highly-anticipated electric pickup trucks from established manufacturers by substantial margins. Production of Tesla’s Cybertruck was pushed back to 2022 alongside Ford’s F-150, which is eyeing a spring 2022 production start date. GM’s Hummer EV is expected to go into production sometime this fall.

Prices start at $67,500, and customers are able to pay a $1,000 deposit on its website.

Rivian is also working on the R1S, an electric SUV.

Rivian is poised to rival the likes of Tesla in the EV market. The company, which is backed by Amazon, has raised more money than any other EV startup that hasn’t gone public, Insider previously reported. Amazon also ordered a fleet of 100,000 custom electric delivery vehicles from Rivian earlier this year.

Bloomberg reported in August that Rivian was aiming for IPO later this year with a valuation of around $80 billion.

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Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos are backing a 3-year search for electric vehicle metals that could be used in Teslas

Jeff Bezos Bill Gates Elon Musk
Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, Microsoft’s Bill Gates, and Tesla’s Elon Musk.

  • Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates are backers of the mineral exploration startup KoBold Metals.
  • KoBold’s CEO told Insider that a new partnership with BHP would hunt for metals used in EVs.
  • The partnership could eventually source metals for Tesla vehicles, House said.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

An artificial intelligence startup backed by Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos has teamed up with the world’s second-largest mining group to hunt for metals used in electric vehicles.

KoBold Metals and BHP will together search for lithium, nickel, cobalt, and copper in Australia, KoBold CEO Kurt House told Insider in an interview.

KoBold and BHP’s three-year partnership could help to source the nickel that gets used in Tesla vehicles, House said.

In July, BHP signed a deal with Tesla to provide nickel for the carmaker’s electric batteries.

“It could very well be that if we make nickel and cobalt discoveries together, those supplies will end up being a part of that agreement,” House said. “We could easily contribute to it in the future.

“Tesla is awesome. No question about it. They’re the market leader in electric vehicles,” House said, adding that KoBold’s goal was to help the entire electric vehicle (EV) industry.

KoBold, a privately-owned mineral exploration company based in Silicon Valley, uses artificial intelligence to collect data on where to drill for raw materials used in EVs.

House didn’t give an exact figure for how much the companies were likely to spend on the project, but said they’ll be shelling out tens of millions of dollars over the next two years.

Exploration will kick off in western Australia, covering half a million square kilometers of land, House said.

The companies chose Australia because the country is well endowed with the right materials needed for EVs, and it has high labor and environmental standards, House said.

“We can basically guarantee that any discoveries we make there will be developed in an ethically and environmentally sound way,” he said.

Billionaire funding

One of the principal investors in KoBold is Breakthrough Energy Ventures, a climate and technology fund financed by Microsoft cofounder Bill Gates, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, and Bloomberg founder Michael Bloomberg, according to KoBold.

House said that Gates and Bezos had influence over the EV metals search but said he couldn’t reveal how much money Gates’ fund had invested in the project.

Other KoBold investors include Andreessen Horowitz, the prominent Silicon Valley VC firm, and Norwegian state-owned energy company Equinor.

In August, KoBold said it would spend $15 million hunting for EV materials in Greenland alongside mining firm Bluejay.

Read the original article on Business Insider