South African born Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has hit back on tech billionaire Bill Gates who earlier cast doubt on his ability to develop electric vehicles for long-haul travel.
Reacting to a Twitter follower who asked Musk about his opinion on Gates’ comment on the viability of electric trucks, Musk replied: “He has no clue”.
Gates wrote in a blog post in late August that the problem with long-haul electric vehicles is that batteries are big and heavy.
“Even with big breakthroughs in battery technology, electric vehicles will probably never be a practical solution for things like 18-wheelers, cargo ships, and passenger jets. Electricity works when you need to cover short distances, but we need a different solution for heavy, long-haul vehicles,” Gates wrote.
He pointed to biofuels – rather than battery power – as a possible solution for commercial vehicles.
On the other hand, Musk is pretty excited about electric trucks and has reportedly directed Tesla to ramp up production of the Semi, a commercial vehicle with a range of up to 800km, for its upcoming debut.
Gates further said that “you’ll even be able to buy an all-electric pick-up truck soon thanks to legacy companies like GM and Ford and new carmakers like Rivian and Bollinger”.
Microsoft co-founder Gates told CNBC last month that “Elon’s positioning is to maintain a high level of outrageous comments”.
He was referring to Musk’s comment on fake Covid-19 positive cases being reported, indirectly questioning the Covid testing process of the US government.
“He’s not much involved in vaccines. He makes a great electric car. And his rockets work well. So he’s allowed to say these things. I hope that he doesn’t confuse areas he’s not involved in too much,” Gates was quoted as saying.
Gates is the world’s second-richest person while Musk is now at fourth position.
The electric car maker Tesla is set to showcase “many exciting things” at its Battery Day on September 22, Musk has said. – Online