Tesla Issues Response To Poaching War With Apple: Making Cars Is Hard


The response comes after Apple hiring swaths of Tesla employees just this year alone

Publicity-wise, Apple, and Tesla are two of the most prominent tech companies out there. While so much alike, these two companies are surprisingly different in a lot of areas.

Just recently, Apple became the world’s first trillion-dollar company. Tesla, on the other hand, might be on the path to becoming one in the future. Both companies are eyeing vehicle production & services in one way or the other. Tesla’s got the upper hand here, as with its current state of affairs, it actually is a car company.

On the other hand, Apple, even with all its financial might, still is years away from producing their first battery-powered vehicle (if it ever even becomes reality). And to make matters worse for the Cupertino based tech giant, it produces the majority of its products overseas. And that might not work with cars. At all.

However, electric vehicles are not the only thing that Apple has its sights set on. And most of the work they do, they need highly trained and well-experienced engineers, designers, and technicians. Apple generally needs software, display, optics and battery-tech talent for its other products. And it seems they are acquiring that talent by poaching it from Tesla. Just this year so far, Apple has hired at least 46 people who worked at Tesla directly before joining Apple – according to LinkedIn data revealed by CNBC earlier this week.

CNBC reveals that people are switching teams due to several reasons. For example, one current Tesla employee – who was apparently encouraged by his former co-workers to join Apple – cited the work atmosphere, competitive pay, and products as the most attractive aspects. Salary wise, several people familiar with the matter have estimated that Apple pays about one-and-a-half times more than Tesla.

In order to clarify the whole “poaching war” situation, Tesla released a statement on the matter, which you can read in full right below.

“We wish them well. Tesla is the hard path. We have 100 times less money than Apple, so of course they can afford to pay more. We are in extremely difficult battles against entrenched auto companies that make 100 times more cars than we did last year, so of course this is very hard work. We don’t even have money for advertising or endorsements or discounts, so we must survive on the quality of our products alone. Nonetheless, we believe in our mission and that it is worth the sacrifice of time and the never ending barrage of negativity by those who wish us ill. So it goes. The world must move to sustainable energy and it must do so now.”

To sum it up, making cars is hard. Working at Tesla is hard work. If you can land a job at Apple and prefer the easier, higher paying route, go for it. If your mission matches that of Teslas, there’s an open job spot waiting for you.

Source: CNBC

Categories: Apple, Tesla

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30 Comments on "Tesla Issues Response To Poaching War With Apple: Making Cars Is Hard"

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In other words Money Talks , what is in a persons heart and mind ? to become very rich or to advance and clean the environment and reduce ones impact on natural resources.

Some Other Guy

There have been reports that the work environment at Tesla is too stressful, even toxic.


Get Real

So, you are going to quote a now Murdoch owned tabloid?

Yeah that is about as low-quality as it gets.

Some Other Guy

I’m quoting a story from a newspaper owned by the family of a member of Tesla’s Board of Directors, which just so happens to have the best headline writers and the most entertaining front page covers in the newspaper industry.

Today’s NY Post front page cover:

comment image


Wrong paper

Some Other Guy

Nope, right paper. That is today’s NY Post cover.



From article: “Publicity-wise, Apple, and Tesla are two of the most prominent tech companies out there…”

Imagine inserting any other car maker in place of “Tesla” in the above sentence… the sentence becomes rendered nonsensical & implausible.

The anti-Tesla Jim Chanos Wolfpack’s failure to recognize and factor that dynamic into their evaluation of Tesla… their failure to comprehend how that differentiates Tesla from all other car makers both short-term (pun intended ) and long-term (pun intended ) is a critical oversight in their evaluation of Tesla. Jim Chanos public position is that “Tesla is not a leader” in EV automotive technology. The general public perceives Tesla is the EV technology leader… which is in fact the case.

Vanja Kljaic

There’s literally no doubt that Tesla is discussed even more than Lamborghini, Ferrari or Koenigsegg, Rimac and others. Sheer fact remains that they are producing an amazing product, but also, Musk is doing an incredible PR job as well. If we take away the whole “taking it private” mess he created, that is.


“There is no such thing as bad publicity”


@Vanja Kljaic said: “… If we take away the whole “taking it private” mess he created, that is…”

Was Musk’s “considering going private” tweet Musk cleverly playing 3D chess?

Would be be interesting to know how much of the Musk “taking it private” tweet was Musk intentionally calculating that it would ignitite the “taking private” topic in a way that despite the controversy it created has leveraged Musk’s hand in negotiating a deal under terms as Musk invisions a private deal would be structured… basically a near copy of private SpaceX

The quicky released follow ups to the initial tweets “clarified” intent/terms basically a near copy of private SpaceX. Seems to me Musk’s tweet has net benefited Musk’s hand in getting what Musk wants.


Perhaps he is an evil genius who deliberately flaunts SEC rules and criminally manipulates shareholders in order to “get what Musk wants”. But Occam’s Razor and his NYT interview say he’s just very passionate and impulsive and doesn’t fully think through the ramifications of his actions.

Seven Electrics

Is this really pertinent to the article?


@Seven Electrics said: “Is this really pertinent to the article?”


Thanks for asking… let me explain.

The article is about an employee poaching war between two technology leaders vying to win the EV technology long game be it related to product production, software systems, MaaS, or combination thereof.

But according to hedge fund manager Jim Chanos Tesla is (in his words) “worthless” and “not a leader” in EV technology.

So I’m Just pointing out the disconnect between reality on the ground and Jim Chanos’s contrived anti-Tesla thesis.


You would need to be paid a lot more to work on the next slight improvement in the iPhone or minor tweak to the next MacBook compared to creating world changing vehicles.

Vanja Kljaic

And what is to say that Apple may not come with an even more technologically superior vehicle in the end? Mind you, Apple never built a phone until the iPhone. I’m pretty sure they have both the financial and human resources capacity to do just that.


They still don’t make much of the the Iphone hardward.
It’s assembled by Foxcon, and most of the parts are supplied and patented by Samsung & qualcomm.
Can’t be a car company if you don’t make your own car.


Not entirely true.

Designing the vehicle is the hard part, just like designing any product. Manufacturing is the “easy” part, after the initial fitting out of a factory. Farming out some/all of the manufacturing is done by most manufacturers, whether that be vehicle parts, or entire vehicles (see Magna Steyr).

If Apple are planning to actually make a physical vehicle (rather than “just” the AV tech/software) then they need to be making the choice of building factories and dealing with the manufacturing themselves (like Tesla are doing), or continuing their business model and getting a manufacturer (like Magna) to actually build the vehicle for them.

David Green

Andy, you over simplified it a bit. Designing and building a concept car is the easy part, but converting that concept car into a buildable, and durable production car is where most of the cost comes in. The factory cost is not so bad if you already have a modern line, as you just have to buy the stamping dies, and readjust your other equipment. It is expensive for Tesla, because they have to build additional production factory, and equipment from scratch.

The nice thing about Magna is they will also help you with the production engineering, as they did on the I-Pace, this helps a company that may have their staff and factories tied up on other projects. As I understand it, Magna did most of the production engineering work for the upcoming Toyota Supra, and BMW Z4.

Magna also offers turnkey service for a startup, where they will do everything, including building the concepts… I am not sure if anyone has been about to afford that service…


I doubt Apple are hiring battery and automotive experts for their iPhone and Macbook products…

David Green

Apple is working on the integrated electronics, and self driving, they will partner with an OEM when it is time to build a car, Apple is not a manufacturer, even of their most highly successful and profitable products.

David Green

Works for me… feeding, and securing the future for my family is Job 1… I do not think Tesla is going to save the world, they are operated too much in chaos to affect any really big changes. Tesla is mostly hype stories, and poor execution. Like the fire yesterday, anyone who has read my posts here, has read me taking about the garbage all over Fremont, not only is it messy and cluttered… It is dangerous, second fire in that area, in the last couple months. In the summer, one employee throwing a cigarette in the wrong area and poof…


Might also be work life balance. The permanent start-up mode isn’t for everybody.

David Green

To be honest, if I was an vehicle development engineer, I would rather work at GM, VW, Toyota, or Nissan, because of the engineering bandwidth of those companies. GM for example, has tools at their Milford proving grounds that very few companies in the world have. If I was a software engineer I would rather work at Apple, as they are a good company that has great pay and benefits, and they also do a lot to help others, and operate in a green manner. In the USA they use 100% renewable energy, which I think is great. Tesla is very unorganized, and in a constant state of chaos. Also on the executive level, people get paid by stock appreciation, the last 2 years that has been bobbing up and down, but the long term growth track has stopped.


Why doesn’t Apple just get it over with and buy Tesla? Then they can get all the Tesla employees and not have to increase their salaries. I’m sure they could do it. I bet they’re just waiting for the distress sale.


Apple is a tech company, and it’s unlikely they want to be a car company. They also tend to have a focus on consistent and simple user experience. Tesla’s more radical “change the world” mission and their unconventional tactics would be out of place at Apple.

David Green

If Apple did buy an OEM, it would not be Tesla, just look at the price/assets, its a bad ratio… BMW would be a better investment, lots more tangable assets, and smooth operations.


I see a buyout happening


I said that above, but it wasn’t popular. LOL!


Yes, making cars takes much more than making smart phones.


Apple is not trying to make another Tesla, they’re trying to make an Apple car. Most of these Tesla employees probably already use Apple products, so they already believe in Apple’s products. I don’t see it as taking the easy way to join Apple if it’s a company and vision they believe in.