Quoted: Elon Musk says Apple is ‘graveyard’ for former Tesla employees

“We always jokingly call Apple the ‘Tesla Graveyard.’ If you don’t make it at Tesla, you go work at Apple. I’m not kidding.”

Elon Musk, Tesla CEO, on engineers who’ve jumped from the Palo Alto electric car maker to work on Apple’s unconfirmed self-driving car project. Musk made the comments in an interview with German newspaper Handelsblatt.

It’s not the first time Musk has talked about the talent battle between the two companies. As we wrote earlier this year, he told Bloomberg that Apple “tries very hard to recruit from Tesla but so far they’ve actually recruited very few people.” On the other side, Bloomberg reported that (as of February) at least 150 former Apple employees work at Tesla, attracted to the drive and leadership of Musk — who apparently is “enamored” with Apple and being compared to its late leader, Steve Jobs.

But Musk is downplaying Apple as a competitor when it comes to cars. He also told Handelsblatt that “cars are very complex compared to phones or smartwatches. You can’t just go to a supplier like Foxconn and say: ‘Build me a car.’ ”

Apple has not confirmed it’s working on an autonomous car, but Matt O’Brien wrote last month that the company has met with the DMV about its rules on self-driving vehicles.


Photo of Tesla CEO Elon Musk in 2011 by Jim Gensheimer/Bay Area News Group


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