Financial News

  • 16 February 2013, 5:49

Tesla's Boss Disputes New York Times Review

The chief executive of Tesla has defended its battery-powered Model S following a New York Times review claiming the vehicle ran out of power.

The company's co-founder Elon Musk posted a blog on its website claiming he was "upset" by the article because "it does not factually represent Tesla technology".

Last week, New York Times reporter John Broder wrote that the Model S did not travel as far as he expected in cold weather before it needed recharging.

He said that on a journey from Washington DC to Connecticut he was forced to drive below the speed limit, turn down the car's heat - despite the cold - and in the end had to be towed to a charging station.

But on Thursday Mr Musk published data logs which he said were taken from the test drive in question and contradicted the claims.

In the blog, entitled 'A Most Peculiar Test Drive' he said the information showed the car was driven faster than described, and did not run out of battery.

He wrote that Mr Broder "worked very hard to force our car to stop running".

"When the facts didn't suit his opinion, he simply changed the facts," Mr Musk said.

In response, Mr Broder set out point-by-point responses to Mr Musk's assertions in an article on the New York Times website.

He said: "His (Mr Musk's) broadest charge is that I consciously set out to sabotage the test. That is not so.

"I was delighted to receive the assignment to try out the company's new East Coast Supercharger network and I ? in no way anticipated - or deliberately caused - the troubles I encountered."

Following the publication of the original article, Mr Musk tweeted: "NYTimes article about Tesla range in cold is fake.

"Vehicle logs tell true story that he didn't actually charge to max & took a long detour."

In response to the tweet, New York Times spokeswoman Eileen Murphy said the article "was completely factual, describing the trip in detail exactly as it occurred."

She added: "Any suggestion that the account was 'fake' is, of course, flatly untrue."

Mr Musk, who co-founded Tesla in 2003, is the company's biggest shareholder.

The billionaire entrepreneur also co-founded PayPal and is behind SpaceX, which develops spacecraft with the aim of sending members of the public into space.

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