Who’s this and when did Tesla start making cars?
Elon Musk did not found Tesla. How about that? In fact, Tesla Motors Inc, now simply Tesla Inc, was founded on 1 July 2003 in Palo Alto, California by American engineers and entrepreneurs Martin Eberhard and Marc Tarpenning. Eberhard was Tesla’s first CEO, appointed by chairman of the board, one Elon Musk. Musk supplied almost all the funding to get the company off the ground, after the founders were inspired by GM scrapping its EV1 electric car programme.
Tesla didn’t build its first car in 2003, though, or in 2004. In fact, no new car wore the Tesla badge until the Lotus Elise-based Tesla Roadster arrived in 2008. Tesla’s first bespoke car, the Model S saloon, finally went into production in summer 2012.