There’s been plenty of talk about a potential partnership between Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) and Bayerische Motoren Werke AG (ETR:BMW) (FRA:BMW), but it doesn’t sound like that will actually happen. Tesla CEO Elon Musk himself said they were talking informally about a potential partnership, fanning the flames of suggestions previously made in the press.
However, a BMW spokesperson said they actually aren’t interested in partnering with Tesla.
Musk works PR magic
Officials with the German automaker also said they’re not interested in buying shares of Tesla Motors, according to Green Car Reports, which cites German business magazine Wirtschafts Woche. The German magazine doesn’t name the officials it spoke with. They reportedly said the informal talks with Tesla aren’t very significant.
In addition to Musk’s comments about offering BMW assistance with charging station technology and batteries, he also showed interest in BMW’s carbon fiber reinforced plastic. The material could offer the perfect solution for the door problems Tesla has supposedly been having with the Model X. The BMW officials apparently said they might sell their carbon fiber material, but they would do so to any automaker rather than only to Tesla.
Musk also mentioned something about building a battery factory in Germany, but they said also that they’re not interested in getting involved with such a facility.
BMW officials reportedly accused Musk of essentially just pandering to the press or using their company for “PR purposes.” Recently Toyota Motor Corp (ADR) (NYSE:TM) (TYO:7203) sold some of its stake in Tesla Motors, while Daimler AG (OTCMKTS:DDAIF) (RA:DAI) (ETR:DAI) completely vacated its position in the electric vehicle manufacturer.
Any upside for Tesla?
Of course there are still plenty of analysts and investors who are bullish on Tesla. Today Forbes contributor Susan Kalla echoed comments made by many others regarding the automaker’s battery technology. Steve Lieber of Alpine Woods Capital has been bullish on Tesla since at least the middle of 2013. Like others, Lieber said the key to Tesla’s success is its batteries.
Tesla uses about 7,000 AA small laptop-sized cylindrical batteries in its battery packs rather than the larger, more expensive battery cells used by other electric vehicle manufacturers. The decision to do this enabled Tesla to leverage the scale that’s already in place for the consumer electronics industry.
The automaker’s planned gigafactory will also enable it to cut the cost of its battery packs even further.