Elon Musk, the billionaire CEO of Tesla Motors, had an explanation why a battery in a Model S caught on fire this past week. It appears as if a metal object impaled the battery, causing the malfunction and subsequent fire.
The fire had some investors doubting in the quality of Tesla cars, and sent the company’s stock on a sharp downturn. In a blog post on Friday, Musk detailed what happened, defended the technology used to create the batteries in Tesla electric cars, and tried to settle investors’ concerns.
Fires, Musk wrote in his blog, are really something that people who own gas-powered vehicles should be more worried about than anyone who owns an electric car. He stated that “there should be absolutely zero doubt that it is safer to power a car with a battery than a large tank of highly flammable liquid.”
How did the metal object pierce the battery and start the fire?
The metal object which pierced the battery of the Model S and started the fire was curved in shape, according to Musk. The shape of the metal object caused it to, when ran over by the car, punch a hole approximately three inches in diameter through the armor plate on the car’s bottom.
The Model S , according to Tesla Motors, contained the blaze, as it was designed to do in the rare cases when it might accidentally catch on fire for whatever reason.
The driver of the Model S was unharmed by the resultant fire, and ended up leaving his car in Kent, a suburb of Seattle, Washington, before the front of the car was engulfed by the fire.
Most of the 194,000 vehicles which catch on fire in America are in trucks and cars which have diesel or gasoline-powered engines. There are comparatively fewer electric cars in the United States, however. Less than one percent of the cars sold in America are electric ones.
After a video was released on the Internet of the car fire, stocks declined sharply. Musks explanation seemed to alleviate the concerns of investors somewhat, as the shares did better on Friday. They rose in value $7.67, ending the day at $180.98.
Though the stock ended the week with a loss of 5.2 percent of their total worth at the beginning of the week, they have still shown an increase this year of around 400 percent.
Whatever businesses Elon Musk gets involved with seem to become gold mines. Tesla Motors has given the major car companies in the United States a run for their money, and the fire in the Tesla Model S which was caused by a metal object piercing the battery will likely just be looked back upon soon as a bump in the road for the automotive company.
Written by: Douglas Cobb