Tesla Motors is an intriguing company headed by a very intelligent CEO, Elon Musk, who has
an affinity for making bold and strategically astute decisions about how Tesla is going to
conduct its crusade to revolutionize the global automobile industry and supplant gasolinepowered vehicles with battery-powered vehicles. Tesla Motors is a very high-profile company in a high-profile industry. Elon Musk is a very high-profile CEO. Tesla is one of the most widely watched companies in the world, and news of its every move and every quarterly report attracts widespread attention and rapt investor interest.
• Assignment Questions
1. What are the key elements of Tesla Motors’ strategy?
2. Which one of the five generic competitive strategies discussed in Chapter 5 most
closely approximates the competitive approach that Tesla is employing?
3. Are you impressed by the strategy Elon Musk has crafted for Tesla? Why or why not?
4. What is your assessment of Tesla’s financial performance as shown in case Exhibit 1?
Use the financial ratio information in Table 4.1 of Chapter 4 (pages 81–83) to assist
you in calculating a revealing set of financial ratios and interpreting them.
5. What do we learn from the data in case Exhibit 2? Does the data provide additional
valuable information? Why or why not?
6. What grade would you give Elon Musk for his handling of the battery pack fires and
battery-charging fire in the residential garage of a Model S owner?
7. What are the issues/problems that Elon Musk and other members of Tesla’s top
management team need to address?
8. What, if any, changes/adjustments in Tesla’s strategy would you recommend that Elon
9. What is your outlook for Tesla’s future performance and its prospects for
revolutionizing the global automotive industry’s use of gasoline-powered engines
versus battery-powered engines?
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