Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk at Motor Trend 'Car of the Year' ceremony in New York City, Nov 2012Enlarge Photo
One week ago today, Americans elected a president.
During the hard-fought campaign that preceded the election, Republican candidate Mitt Romney called Tesla a "loser" company, along with Fisker Automotive.
Tesla Motors [NSDQ:TSLA] and other companies named by Romney had received loans or grants from the U.S. government.
Last night, Tesla CEO Elon Musk made his first comment on the affair, at a ceremony in which the 2012 Tesla Model S received Motor Trend's Car of the Year award.
Musk contrasted the Model S, the winner of the award, to the "loser" remark made during the campaign--by parsing the comment grammatically.
Mr. Romney, he suggested, had gotten "the object, but not the subject" of the remark right.
A standing-room-only crowd of Tesla owners and depositors laughed and cheered his comment.
More seriously, Musk noted, Tesla Motors was proud to have created 3,500 U.S. jobs--at its Fremont, California, assembly plant and elsewhere.
He suggested that the re-election of Barack Obama as president was a good sign for the future of plug-in electric cars in the U.S.
"I think that we can expect at least that things will continue as they have," Musk told the audience.
"I wouldn't expect it to get any worse for electric vehicles," he continued. "Hopefully, it will get a little better."
1,000th body for 2012 Tesla Model S on display at Tesla Motors factory, Fremont, CA, Oct 28, 2012
1,000th body for 2012 Tesla Model S on display at Tesla Motors factory, Fremont, CA, Oct 28, 2012Enlarge Photo
Tesla Motors is focused on ramping up production of the Model S sedan, continuing design of the upcoming Model X crossover, and starting to plan its next generation of more affordable electric cars.
The company's sales will ultimately be split in thirds, Musk predicted: one third each to North American, Europe, and Asia.
He added that the Tesla Supercharger network of fast-charging stations, which only work with the Model S and other Tesla cars, will expand to cover the Boston-to-Washington corridor "next month"--and would be rolled out nationwide within a year.
Musk's comments were the first time that Tesla Motors had responded in any way to the Romney remark.
At the time Romney called the company a loser during an early October presidential debate, spokeswoman Christina Ra said Tesla had no comment.