The Name Tesla – Elon Musk on How He Actually Bought it for $ 75,000

The first image the Name Tesla brings into our mind is that of the Pioneer Electric Car Company founded by Elon Musk. Tesla played a major role in revolutionalizing the commercial availability of electric powered cars. Also, Tesla’s contribution never remained restricted to electric cars, but Tesla also played a notable role in developing and commercializing Autonomous Navigation Technology through its Autopilot Feature.

A Tesla Model S | Source – Wiki

Elon Musk, in an interview with the CBS 60 Minutes made a statement that the name of the most innovative Electric Car Company, Tesla, was bought for a price. Musk revealed this in an interview with Leslie Stahl in the ’60 Minutes’.

Musk mentioned that they did not come up with the name Tesla and that Brad Siewert, a guy from Sacramento owned the trademark for that name. Siewert had filed for the name in 1994 and was holding on to its ownership until selling it to Musk.

Musk was also seen as commenting on the process that went into acquiring this trademark of the name ‘Tesla’  from Siewert. The process was never effortless. He said that Siewert did not want to give up the name at all. They had a difficult time convincing him for the same. Musk had to send the nicest guy in the company to Siewert’s doorstep to convince him until he agreed to give up the name.

The name was then bought from the ‘guy from Sacramento’ for $ 75,000 in late 2004. Musk also made a statement that the alternative name was Faraday, just in case the Tesla name did not work.

However, Tesla’s backup name Faraday was later on used by another American Start-Up, ‘Faraday Future’, a company focussed on developing cars that are Electric and Intelligent.

In his official Twitter page, Musk was also seen as commenting on the story on how acquired the name from Brad. He wrote, “Tesla history trivia: we didn’t actually come up with the Tesla Motors Name. Bought trademark off Brad Siewert for $ 75,000 in late 2004. Our alternative name was Faraday, which was then used by a competitor several years later”

the name tesla

Musk’s Tweet on how they | Source – Twitter

Musk was also seen as commenting on the pronunciation of ‘Tesla’ with Leslie Stahl in 60 Minutes. The two were seen to indulge in a healthy yet friendly argument on how to pronounce the ‘S’ in ‘Tesla’. Musk said that he would rather say Tesla with a ‘z’ sound for the ‘S’ and that it was not two Ss and it had to be a short ‘S’. Leslie, however, stuck to the ‘S’ sound for S and pronounced ‘Tesla’ and not ‘Tezla’.

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Useful Links – 

Full video from 60 Minutes 

60 Minutes