SAN FRANCISCO:

Tesla has cancelled the long-promised inexpensive car that investors have been counting on to drive its growth into a mass-market automaker, according to three sources familiar with the matter and company messages seen by Reuters.

The automaker will continue developing self-driving robotaxis on the same small-vehicle platform, the sources said.

The decision represents an abandonment of a longstanding goal that Tesla’s Chief Elon Musk has often characterised as its primary mission: affordable electric cars for the masses. His first “master plan” for the company in 2006 called for manufacturing luxury models first, then using the profits to finance a “low cost family car.”

Musk has since repeatedly promised such a vehicle to investors and consumers. Tesla did not respond to requests for comment. After the story was published, Musk posted on his social media site X that “Reuters is lying (again).” He did not identify any specific inaccuracies.

Published in The Express Tribune, April 7th, 2024.

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