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Elon Musk Loves it When Tesla Competitors do This

Tesla CEO has an unexpected response to other car makers adding electric vehicles.
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Elon Musk is anything but predictable. 

The CEO of Tesla  (TSLA) , SpaceX, the Boring Company and other ventures is constantly offering surprising commentary and reactions, especially on Twitter  (TWTR) , which he’s acquiring for $44 billion unless he can manage to wriggle out of the deal.

Musk covered a lot of ground at Tesla’s recent annual meeting.

He commented on plans for a new futuristic diner at a Tesla supercharger site in Los Angeles; higher prices for the oft-delayed Cybertruck; the number of Teslas he thinks can be sold over the next 10 years and more.

Musk also offered an interesting take on competition during the sometimes raucous meeting with shareholders.

Tesla's Early Days

“When we started out here, we were told electric cars were impossible, and even if, really if you could make an electric car with a couple hundred miles range, then nobody would buy it anyway because people love gasoline cars,” Musk told shareholders.

Musk said that basically “When we started out it was dumb to start a car company and then dumb squared to [start] an electric car company.”

He then gloated “Now we have the highest operating margin in the whole industry.”

Tesla Faces More Competition

Musk also discussed growing competition.

“There’s a lot of talk of competition among electric vehicles. But really EVs take market share from gasoline cars. And from Tesla’s standpoint, we obviously welcome this," Musk told the shareholder meeting.

He added that, “We’re very excited to see that the big car companies are embracing electric vehicles. If you were to rewind the press releases to five years ago that was not the case.”

In addition, he said “But now I believe almost every major car company in the world has embraced electrification and agrees that it is the right path. And this is really what we set out to do with Tesla.”

When Tesla was started “it was really to try to show the auto industry that it was possible to go electric and if you made compelling electric cars, people would buy them. And that’s what’s happened and I think that’s really profound.”

But there’s another benefit to Tesla, according to Musk. “When our competitors advertise for electric vehicles, every time they do that our sales go up. It’s pretty funny.”