Elon Musk Says Joint Tesla-Toyota Project Coming
Tesla announced earlier this year that they would be ending their agreement to provide Toyota with battery packs for the electric RAV4. But that doesn't mean the two companies are going their separate ways entirely. The electric RAV4 will likely finish with sales of roughly 2,500 units, but Tesla CEO Elon Musk says there could be another Toyota-Tesla partnership in the future on a much higher volume vehicle. Toyota, though, may not completely agree. PHOTOS: See More of the High-Powered Saleen Tesla Model S
Musk made the announcement at an event to mark the delivery of Japan's first Model S sedans. There are no hard and fast plans, but Musk was quoted in Automotive News saying, "I think that if you look out maybe two or three years from now, that I would not be surprised if there is a significant deal with Toyota. My best guess is that it would probably be something significant, maybe on a much higher volume level."
For its part, Toyota isn't saying a word. The automaker owns a 2.4 percent stake in Tesla, so a partnership would seem like a natural fit, but the two have had differing opinions on the future of electric vehicles.
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Once sales of the electric RAV4 finish by year's end, there won't even be an electric vehicle in the Toyota fleet. They've turned away from the idea of purely electric cars in favor of hydrogen fuel cells.
Musk, not surprisingly, seems undaunted by this news. He said, "We love working with Toyota. We have a huge amount of respect for them as a company and certainly much to learn."
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