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Elon Musk Sees Tesla Master Plan Costing Tens of Billions


A 1,500-word manifesto that Elon Musk unveiled last week, outlining his plan to expand Tesla Motors Inc.’s electric-vehicle line and to build “stunning solar roofs,” may end up costing the company tens of billions of dollars to carry out.

Musk, Tesla’s chairman and chief executive officer, gave the estimate on Tuesday after a tour of the company’s battery factory under construction in Nevada. He quickly added that he doesn’t plan on spending billions more right away.

“Over time, this must necessarily be true,” he said. “Don’t quote me saying I plan to spend tens of billions right now because that would be incorrect.”

Related: For Elon Musk, Tesla Impresario, the Latest Act Falls Flat

Musk took heat from investors last week after delivering a “master plan” that was seen as long on vision and short on details about how he’ll finance his ideas for merging Tesla with rooftop solar installer SolarCity Corp., developing an all-in-one solar and battery solution, and offering electric buses and trucks and autonomous ride-sharing fleets. It followed what was already a rocky month for Tesla, which has been on the defensive about its driver-assist technology following a fatal Florida crash.

A key manufacturing executive recently left for Facebook Inc. and Tesla’s stockplunged in June on news of the potential $2.86 billion takeover of SolarCity. – READ MORE

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