If Musk really prefers being an engineer, why doesn’t he resign as CEO and take a job as an engineer? Maybe like many entrepreneurs, he complains, but in his heart he prefers being an entrepreneur?
(p. B3) WILMINGTON, Del.—Elon Musk said Tesla bought SolarCity Corp. for one fundamental reason: to become more than a car company.
The Tesla Inc. chief executive made the argument as he wrapped up two days of sometimes feisty testimony in court, defending the roughly $2.1 billion tie-up completed in 2016 at a time both Tesla and SolarCity were financially struggling.
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Though the grilling focused largely on what information Tesla shareholders were given about the financial condition of SolarCity, Mr. Musk at times veered farther afield in answering, particularly when it came to whether he exerted too much control over the purchase, a key question in the trial.
On Monday he said that he didn’t enjoy being the boss of Tesla. “I rather hate it, and I would much prefer to spend my time on design and engineering, which is what intrinsically I like doing,” he said.
When Mr. Baron on Tuesday asked Mr. Musk whether he had lied about when a core SolarCity product would be ready to sell in large volume, he responded, “I have a habit of being optimistic.” Mr. Baron fired back: “This is more than optimistic. This is just plain out false.”
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(Note: the online version of the story was updated July 13, 2021, and has the title “Elon Musk Defends SolarCity Deal: ‘The Goal Is Not to Be a Car Company’.”)