It appears as though last month’s much-touted tie-up between Toyota and American electric car maker Tesla Motors was more of a publicity stunt than the start of a brave new electric world. In a recently filed IPO statement to the SEC, Tesla says that while there are a lot of good intentions to work together on future electric vehicles and bring the Tesla Model S to market, “we have not entered into any agreements with Toyota for any such arrangement, including any purchase orders, and we may never do so.”
The deal, it seems, depends on Tesla’s IPO, which is how the electric car maker will generate the funds necessary to buy the NUMMI factory from Toyota. In other words, no IPO, no deal and no Model S build in California by former Toyota employees using the Japanese automakers proven formula for success.
So why all the fuss about the Tesla/Toyota tie-up? The folks at TTAC suggested it was just a whim by company CEO Akio Toyoda after driving the Tesla Roadster and falling in love with it. We suggest it’s more likely a political publicity stunt by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger to get the support of his Prius driving constituents and help put some positive light on his bankrupt state.