Sunday, June 15, 2014

Tesla Abandons Its Patents, Aims to Spur Electric-Car Revolution

Tesla on the road (Credit: tesla) Click to enlarge.
Tesla, maker of the most critically acclaimed car ever, is going open source.

Every patent that the Silicon Valley electric-car pioneer has ever secured will now be available for any company in the world to use, free of charge.

“Tesla will not initiate patent lawsuits against anyone who, in good faith, wants to use our technology,” Tesla CEO Elon Musk wrote in a blog post published Thursday.  “Our true competition is not the small trickle of non-Tesla electric cars being produced, but rather the enormous flood of gasoline cars pouring out of the world’s factories every day.”

“Given that annual new vehicle production is approaching 100 million per year and the global fleet is approximately 2 billion cars, it is impossible for Tesla to build electric cars fast enough to address the carbon crisis. … We believe that Tesla, other companies making electric cars, and the world would all benefit from a common, rapidly-evolving technology platform,” he wrote.

Following a conference call with Musk, The Wall Street Journal reported that hundreds of patents, covering everything from batteries to electric control systems, would be affected, helping to spur growth in an industry in which Tesla is a global leader.

Mr. Musk also hinted at another reason for the offer: achieving greater economies of scale.  For example, Tesla’s patents for its vehicle Supercharging stations could be shared with other auto makers, which could help Tesla spread costs and more quickly make more stations available.

Tesla Abandons Its Patents, Aims to Spur Electric-Car Revolution

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