“During the darkest days of the Model 3 program, I reached out to Tim Cook to discuss the possibility of Apple acquiring Tesla (for 1/10 of our current value). He refused to take the meeting.” On Tuesday, Musk also made remarks about lithium iron phosphate batteries that Apple is reportedly developing for use in vehicles, per a Reuters report on Monday.
“Strange, if true,” Musk wrote. “Tesla already uses iron-phosphate for medium range cars made in our Shanghai factory.- A monocell is electrochemically impossible, as max voltage is ~100X too low. Maybe they meant cells bonded together, like our structural battery pack?”
It was a rare admission from the mercurial CEO that he once considered giving up control of the company he helped build and take to a market value that’s more than the top nine automakers combined. Tesla has not discussed a sale in any financial filing.
In 2018, Musk did publicly say the car business was “hell,” and that he was sleeping at the factory to try to solve the problems the company was having as it tried to start mass-manufacturing its Model 3 electric sedans.
He also previously said, in a tweet, that Tesla once got “about a month” from bankruptcy during the Model 3 ramp-up — a detail that the company never disclosed in its quarterly filings.
Tesla and Apple have always competed for talent in and beyond Silicon Valley. In 2015, Musk called Apple the Tesla graveyard. “If you don’t make it at Tesla you go work for Apple,” he quipped then.