Car Fight: Chrysler Calls Out Tesla – Who Paid Up First?

Bertel Schmitt
by Bertel Schmitt
car fight chrysler calls out tesla 8211 who paid up first

Ommm – ummmm

The first thing they drummed into me when I started as a copywriter for Volkswagen: “Never use superlatives. They only get you in trouble.” Now, Elon Musk is in trouble over who was first to fully pay back the government loan.

Yesterday, Tesla wired $452 million to repay the remaining portion of its DOE loan with interest. The company told Reuters it is “the only American car company to have fully repaid the government.”

Chrysler fired back four hours later: “Not exactly, Tesla.”

Having repaid $7.6 billion in federal loans in 2011, Chrysler said today : “Tesla’s information is unmistakably incorrect.”

Musk went on Twitter and came back with a retort that will enrage red, white and blueblooded Chrysler fans. He said Chrysler is no U.S. car company, it is a division of Fiat and besides, Chrysler never fully repaid its loans.

Says Reuters: “The U.S. government recouped about $11.2 billion of its funds. In 2011, Treasury said it is unlikely to fully recover $1.3 billion owed by Old Chrysler.”

All I can say: Stay away from superlatives. They only get you in trouble.

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6 of 37 comments
  • Danio3834 Danio3834 on May 23, 2013

    Chrysler paid back what they were legally obligated to first. And yes, as already pointed out, they are a registered U.S. corporation. They are not a division of Fiat, Fiat is a majority stockholder. Musk is really making himself out to be a blaggard by trying to boost his own company's reputation by spouting off falsehoods.

    • See 3 previous
    • Danio3834 Danio3834 on May 24, 2013

      @Thinkin... Perhaps. Why do you people seem to think this is some sort of revelation? There are some differences between Chrysler and Toyonda of America. Where the global headquarters of their parent corporations are, where the R&D activites are centered and where most of the profits end up, if any of that even matters to you at all. Chrysler is registered as a U.S. corporation with it's headquarters in Auburn Hills, Michigan. The profits go there. When/if a full Fiat merger takes place, sources indicate that Fiat will move it's global headquarters to Auburn Hills, not the other way around. Then by the definition of some, will Fiat become an American company? Semantics.

  • Porschespeed Porschespeed on May 24, 2013

    Tesla's over $1B (currently, not counting unfunded liabilities) in the hole to investors. Profitable so that investors get paid back with a return? Never in a bazillion years. Just like GM-Episode II...

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