Jun 4, 2024 - Economy

Chips diverted

Illustration of Tesla logo and Twitter logo on Elon Musk's shoulders

Illustration: Lindsey Bailey/Axios. Photo: Joshua Lott via Getty Images

Elon Musk told Nvidia to send a bunch of AI chips slated for Tesla to his social media company X, instead.

Why it matters: The news, first reported by CNBC from internal emails at Nvidia, raised immediate questions about whether Musk was being truthful with Tesla's public shareholders about the company's AI spend and about the tech's near-term potential to power things like self-driving vehicles and robotaxis.

Musk confirmed the diversion today, but also downplayed its significance.

  • In a post on X he said Tesla simply had no place to send the chips to turn them on, so they would have "just sat in a warehouse."
  • "The south extension of Giga Texas is almost complete. This will house 50k H100s [chips] for [full self-driving] training," Musk said in response the report, referring to Tesla's gigafactory in Austin.

Between the lines: CNBC reported that the move delayed Tesla's receipt of "more than $500 million in graphics processing units, or GPUs, by months."

Market impact: Tesla shareholders largely shrugged the news off today, with shares closing down 0.9%.

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This story was an excerpt from Axios Closer, a recap on the day's biggest business stories.

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