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Tesla Shares Jump as Investors Buy Into Robotaxi Hype

When Elon Musk announced he’ll unveil a Tesla robotaxi in August.

Tesla has rolled out the latest version of FSD in recent weeks to a growing number of consumers, some via free trials.

Tesla Tweet on FSD usage

Tesla official tweet

On Friday, the company announced that customers had collectively driven more than 1 billion miles using the feature.

Tesla shares already had been sinking before the company reported anemic quarterly delivery figures on April 2. Days later, Bloomberg reported the automaker was shelving plans for a cheaper electric vehicle, extending the tailspin. Musk’s vague denial didn’t do the trick — the stock closed last week as the worst performer in the S&P 500 this year.

  • The shares jumped in late trading on Friday and rose 5.3%

When Tesla started work on the system it markets as Autopilot in 2013, Musk estimated it would be able to handle 90% of the miles customers drove within a few years. In 2016, Musk alluded to autonomy in a second iteration of his master plan for the company, and Tesla started selling a feature called Full Self-Driving, or FSD. Eight years later, the system still doesn’t measure up to its name.

In 2019, Musk declared that 1 million Teslas would soon be on the road and fully capable of driving themselves. He first hinted at plans for a dedicated robotaxi three years later.

Tesla has suggested that its next-generation vehicle platform will underpin both a cheaper car and the dedicated robotaxi, and the vehicles are expected to be similar: one will have a steering wheel, the other won’t.




Image: Tesla