Clearing the road to sustainable transport
Due to intellectual property rights, anyone who wanted to use Tesla technology would have to pay or face a lawsuit. In order to speed up production, many large manufacturers did choose to use Tesla components for their own models. For example, under a technical cooperation deal, Toyota paid $100 million for Tesla electronics and software for their RAV4 EV.
In 2014, Musk announced that they would no longer be filing patent lawsuits, because accelerating the use of sustainable technology was more important than fending off competitors.
In the same year, Tesla unveiled its Gigafactory project that, once completed, will produce more lithium-ion batteries than any other factory in the world. Tesla would be able to reduce their car manufacturing expenses and increase their output, as well as begin the production of solar panels for homes and businesses.
Overtaking market giants
Tesla’s three-step plan was almost complete: the Model S had a 25% share of the premium sedan market, the Model X SUV had been released in 2014 and the Model 3 economy car was announced in 2016.
By 2017 investor confidence in Tesla, and its charismatic CEO, had increased dramatically. Tesla stock reached $312.39 per share in April 2017, and it became the most valuable car manufacturer in the US with a market value of $51 billion – $1 billion more than General Motors.