Home / Auto News / News article: Chrysler Calls BS: Refutes Tesla Loan Claim - AutoGuide.com News
 |  May 23 2013, 1:23 AM

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Earlier today Tesla announced that it had repaid its government loan nine years early and claimed to be the first American automaker to have cleared its government debts in full.

Not so fast. Chrysler has issued a rebuttal to that statement, titled “Not Exactly, Tesla” and announcing that it was in fact the first automaker to repay its government loan. Penned by company corporate communications boss Gualberto Ranieri, the brief post on the Chrysler’s official blog calls Tesla’s assertion “unmistakably incorrect.”

In fact, Chrysler repaid its debts two years ago, “in full and with interest” the company clarifies. The loan repayment totaled $7.6 billion to both the US and Canadian governments and took place six years ahead of schedule.

The Tesla statement, however, refers to the company’s repayment of a specific U.S. Department of Energy vehicle loan for the development of electric cars, not the highly publicized bailouts. In total, as much as 8 billion in loans was distributed to companies, including Nissan.

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  • Alexandre Lafontaine

    Chrysler should not start talking politics and criticize Tesla:

    When Chrysler filed for bankruptcy in 2009, Obama administration forgave more than $4 billion of debt from the $13 billion it had put into the company.

    So while Chrysler did technically pay off the government loans owed by the post-bankruptcy Chrysler, the U.S. government still lost billions of dollars on its investment in Chrysler.

    In other words: Tesla investment = millions in profit. Chrysler investment: Billions of taxpayer money lost.