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Tesla Rivals GM as the Most Valuable Auto Maker in U.S.





A Tesla car is displayed in a showroom in New York.Tesla became the largest U.S. auto maker by market value for a time Monday, overtaking General Motors. PHOTO: GETTY IMAGES
By Tim Higgins
Updated April 10, 2017 5:53 p.m. ET
Silicon Valley overtook the Motor City on Monday.

A surge in Tesla Inc. TSLA -1.47% stock during morning trading gave it the title of largest U.S. auto maker by market value—a feat that would have seemed highly improbable 13 years ago when the electric-car maker based in Palo Alto, Calif., first began tinkering with the idea of making a sports car.

Shares in Tesla rose as high as $313.73 Monday, helped by an upgrade by Piper Jaffray, pushing the company’s market capitalization to $51.17 billion. That high-water mark exceeded Detroit-based General Motors Co., which at its lowest point Monday was worth $50.93 billion. By the market’s close in New York, however, Tesla’s gains had faded, leaving its market value at $50.95 billion compared with GM’s $51.18 billion. Ford Motor Co. F -0.35% closed the day at $44.8 billion.


Market values are calculated using data provided by FactSet, which draws information from public filings.

Still, that Tesla was valued higher than GM underscores the profound change occurring in the global automotive industry as Silicon Valley pursues a vision for transportation—including self-driving cars and vehicles on demand—that could upend century-old competitors. Last week’s disappointing monthly sales results by traditional auto makers served as a further example to investors concerned that the profitable U.S. new-car market is plateauing.

“We’ve built a track record of strong financial performance,” a GM spokeswoman said in an email. “We’ll stay focused on delivering outstanding results and making decisions to deploy capital where it will generate the strongest returns, to enhance shareholder value.”

Tesla declined to comment.

GM is the largest auto maker in the U.S. by market share, making up 17.3% of the sales last year, according to Autodata Corp. Tesla had a 0.2% share, which beat Ferrari and Maserati.


Tesla vs. Ford: Understanding Wall Street’s Math (April 4)
Tesla Shares Surpass $300 Mark (April 4)
Tesla, on a Hot Streak, Passes Ford in Investor Value (April 3)
Why China Can’t Get Enough of Elon Musk (April 1)
“What’s fun about following this company now is that anything can happen,” Chaim Siegel, an analyst for Investing.com, said in an email about Tesla that aligns with investor sentiment even as the auto maker remains unprofitable and deeply in debt. “The potential is huge. The hopes are huge.”

Even some of Tesla’s most optimistic followers didn’t expect the extent of the recent surge in value. “We’re pretty surprised by the recent run in Tesla’s share price to over $300 so quickly,” Adam Jonas, an analyst for Morgan Stanley, wrote in a note to investors as Tesla’s market cap neared GM’s. He had been targeting a $305 price for Tesla. “Such is the power of technical factors over fundamental drivers,” he said.

Tesla shares are up more than 40% this year, a move that last week led Chief Executive Elon Musk’s company to surpass Ford as the second-largest auto maker. The exuberance comes even as Mr. Musk faces huge challenges in accomplishing all he is claiming to do, including making 500,000 vehicles next year after building just 84,000 last year and creating software that would enable a vehicle to drive itself.

“It’s indicative of the market wanting to pay for potential, including into markets that don’t exist yet in any large size such as [electric vehicles], home energy generation and storage, rather than profits and cash flow today that the large auto makers generate,” said David Whiston, an analyst for Morningstar Research.

Mr. Musk, who has struggled to bring out new products before, faces the daunting challenge of later this year rolling out the $35,000 Model 3 sedan, the linchpin in his plans to take the company into the mainstream from the rarefied air of selling luxury vehicles.

His acquisition of SolarCity Corp. late last year and removal of the word “Motors” from the company’s official name are part of a broader vision of being able to offer solar panels to generate energy and batteries to store that power at home or the office—all for the benefit of the vehicles being sold. He has also begun shipping vehicles equipped with the hardware he says is needed to make them fully self-driving once the software is completed, aiming to demonstrate the prowess by year-end.

It is a vision that received a strong endorsement late last month with the revelation that Chinese technology company Tencent Holdings Ltd. , best known for China’s largest social network, WeChat, had acquired a 5% stake in Tesla.

“The sooner investors view Tesla as a transportation/infrastructure company rather than just a car company, the more we believe the industry events to come over the next 12 to 18 months will make sense,” Mr. Jonas wrote.

Tesla in High Gear: Surpasses Ford Investor Value
Tesla overook Ford in investor value for a time Monday, despite being unprofitable and deeply indebted. WSJ Detroit bureau chief John Stoll explains why on Lunch Break with Tanya Rivero. Photo: Bloomberg
Investors continued to push Tesla shares higher last week after the announcement of a record quarter of vehicle sales. Meanwhile, GM reported a modest U.S. sales gain for March, lifted by truck demand, and said Chief Executive Mary Barra earned $22.6 million in 2016, a decline of 21% from 2015 when she was awarded a sizable retention package. Ms. Barra, at the helm since 2014, has said her goal is to make GM the most valued auto maker in the world.

For GM, Tuesday was particularly painful. The Detroit auto maker, which sold 10 million vehicles last year globally, has been rushing to develop its own self-driving technology, acquiring Cruise Automation last year in a deal that could be worth $1 billion, and investing in ride-hailing service Lyft.

Ms. Barra’s predecessor, Dan Akerson, a former telecommunications executive, was concerned about Tesla’s potential, setting up a team to study how the electric-car maker could threaten GM and challenging his senior executives to war-game-like scenarios.

GM has been especially aggressive in recent years in trying to thwart Tesla, pushing legislation in states in an attempt to block the company’s strategy of selling directly to customers instead of using franchised dealers like the rest of the auto industry has done for generations. In preparing the new Chevrolet Bolt all-electric small car, seen by some as GM’s answer to the Model 3, Ms. Barra said in January 2016 at CES, the annual consumer-electronics show in Las Vegas, that GM’s dealer network gave it a competitive edge. Tesla’s belief in having the ability to control its own stores is prized highly among the company’s senior leaders.

GM’s vision of a world with self-driving cars dates to concepts it introduced at the 1939 New York World’s Fair, but innovation took a back seat among many recent leaders as the company fought to avoid bankruptcy.

Ultimately, GM’s debt load and the 2007-09 recession led to what was then-unthinkable years earlier: GM’s U.S. government-backed bankruptcy-court reorganization in 2009.

Financially, the company has roared back, reporting record profits and developing some of its best vehicles in a generation. But investors have largely yawned. Shares in GM closed at $33.71 on Friday, compared with the company’s postbankruptcy-court initial-public-offering price of $33 in 2010.

“It’s absolutely mind-boggling that we’re even discussing GM and Tesla reaching a parallel,” said Dave Sullivan, an industry analyst with AutoPacific. “It’s not as if they are sitting on some sort of blockbuster drug that isn’t available in generic form. The wide rollout of electric vehicles by Jaguar, Daimler, BMW and Audi is right around the corner.”

Write to Tim Higgins at Tim.Higgins@WSJ.com

Appeared in the Apr. 11, 2017, print edition as 'Tesla Vies With GM On Value.'

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Why Ferruccio Lamborghini’s Temper Made Him An Icon!

Check out the unbelievable story of Ferruccio Lamborghini, who was inspired to build one of the biggest motor brands after a heated argument with another motor legend!

1. A Master Mechanic!

Image Source: Getty Images
During World War II, Ferruccio Lamborghini was stationed on the isolated island of Rhodes as a vehicle maintenance supervisor for the Italian Royal Air Force. It was there he honed his master mechanical skills

2. Lambo Tractor

The first ever Lamborghinis were actually tractors – not quite the luxurious sports cars you see today! Ferruccio would make the machines out of his spare parts and people absolutely loved them!

Next: They were an instant hit!

Pretty much overnight, Ferruccio’s tractor business took off! They were known for their quality performance and stylish aesthetic. Ferruccio owned the popular Ferrari 250GT model but one day he noticed something strange about it – the clutch was identical to the ones used in his tractors! Furious, he went directly to Enzo Ferrari to complain.

Enzo Ferrari reacted badly and said to Lamborghini:”You’re just a silly tractor manufacturer, how could you possibly know anything about sports cars?” Lamborghini spat on the floor in front of Ferrari and stormed out!  Lamborghini was determined to prove Ferrari wrong, so he set himself the challenge of manufacturing his very own high-performance sports cars!

In 1963, Ferruccio and his Lamborghini team created the 350GTV, a Ferrari rival supercar. It was revealed at the Turin Auto Show.

Ferruccio was in such a rush to show that he could create a supercar, he left out the time-consuming task of building an engine to be ready in time for the unveiling! He packed a bunch of bricks in the front and kept the hood closed.

Lamborghini appointed Gian Paolo Dallara, formally behind IndyCars to complete some of the engineering work for the 350GTV. He is one of the world’s most elite engineers.

When Lamborghini released the 1960s Miura, it set the world alight and all of the top celebs were driving it. A Super famous Lambo fan was the singer Frank Sinatra who once famously said: “You buy a Ferrari when you want to be somebody. You buy a Lamborghini when you are somebody.”

Ferrari did not expect Lamborghini to make a successful batch of supercars, especially ones that became favored by huge stars! This bred a real rivalry between the two respected brands…

The reason for the famous bull logo, as well as many of the models being named after different bulls, is because of Ferruccio’s April 28th birthday, which makes him a Taurus!

In 1987, Chrysler bought Lamborghini and they immediately started to tinker with designs! Did Ferruccio sell the soul of his very-Italian brand to a bullish-American giant?!Giuseppe Bertone, head of one of Lamborghini’s partners, Bertone design house, shouted “Countach” the first time he saw the concept for Lamborghini’s new flagship model. In English, Countach translates to “Bloody Hell,” hence the Lamborghini Countach was born!

Lamborghini wanted to dominate the world and, unlike Ferrari, they had no problem stepping into different markets. They even released SUVs, like the LM002 pictured above, that had over 700 horsepower! Ferrari reluctantly built street cars after bombing destroyed his factory in Modena. He relocated to Maranello but, unfortunately, it got bombed again! Street cars were just a way to bring in more revenue. The Lamborghini powerboat won a number of offshore championships and it’s known for its slick interiors as well as awesome under-hood specs. It is also capable of outputting 775 horsepower!

Ferruccio Lamborghini tragically passed away due to a heart attack on February 20, 1993, and it shook the entire motor industry! Before he died, Ferruccio put in place his visions for the brand’s future. The Lamborghini brand has become synonymous with the word ‘supercars’ and they are now considered the best-looking vehicles on the market! We find it hard to disagree…The Lamborghini Aventador – released in 2011 – is now considered the most iconic vehicle ever released by the brand. It can blaze from 0-62 mph in a mere 2.9 seconds! Incredible!

The Lamborghini brand built the first ever Viper engine, an extremely high-end piece of machinery! The original aluminum version is currently locked safely away in a Detroit garage.

Due to their high-performance, the Italian police force use nothing but Lamborghini Gallardos when transporting organ donations. You see, the supercar even saves lives! The pure speed and power of Lamborghinis make them desired by everyone, including Kanye West and a load of criminals!  Ferruccio Lamborghini wanted to overpower Ferrari, but did he manage to do it?! We will leave that to you to decide…

The Lamborghini brand has tried its hand everything, from boats to F1 racing to street cars! Ferruccio should have been a very proud man!












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Porsche is celebrating its best year in history by giving every single employee a bonus

Porsche is giving 21,000 employees a great bonus to celebrate its best sales year ever.

Every employee, including janitors and assembly line workers, will receive a 9,111-euro ($9,825) bonus, Porsche wrote in a press release. The bonus is a nod to the 911 — Porsche's stunning sports car that's been in continuous production since 1963.

Porsche increased its deliveries to 237,778 vehicles in the 2016 fiscal year, bringing its revenue to 22.3 billion euro ($24 billion). Porsche's record year was largely due to its crossover SUV sales — the automaker sold 80,000 Macans and 73,000 Cayennes.

The bonus was negotiated by Porsche's Works Council. In Germany, a works council can be set up in all private workplaces with at least five employees.

Works councils exist to ensure key decisions aren't just made by the employer, according to the European Trade Union Institute. Works councils must be informed and consulted on specific issues and can make proposals to employers. They are primarily involved in the organization of hours, holidays, and payment methods.

"In the end, no one in our large VW family received anywhere near as large a bonus as our employees at Porsche," Uwe Hück, chair of Porsche's Group Works Council, wrote in the press release. "We had to walk a very fine line during the negotiations…. The result was this extraordinary and one-off, but completely justified, bonus."

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Honda S Dream Streamliner Is Now Fastest Car Honda Ever Made

The Honda and its Honda S Dream Streamliner, which set a brand-new FIA world record for a vehicle in its Category-A Group-1 Class-4 by knocking a normal top speed of 261.875 mph over the flying mile at the Salt Flats. It also affixed a normal of 261.96 mph over the flying kilometer. The Dream Streamliner finished its content using a heavily altered model of the 660-cc three cylinder engine that was designed for the Honda S660. Using that 660-cc engine to set the world speed record remained company’s main objective said by Keisuke Tsuta in a press merchandise.

The record-setting run may have looked uncomplicated as the affixed moment of 261.865 mph over the flying mile was already faster than the 227.776 mph it set on the first day of the fight to end the FIA record. Getting there, though, were to be the strenuous part as the faction moved through every retreat and depression of the S660 engine and worked on its elements to get three times the power than the engine was able of making in capital form.

Several runs soon acted place, including some at the Bonneville Speed Week where the team was unable to come the speed it needed to end the record. Despite all of the contents that the team had in preparing the Dream Streamliner, the vehicle stood gangling when it was finally moment to strive the world record run, not only becoming the swift vehicle in its collection, but also becoming the swift vehicle Honda has ever created, brooding the room Honda F1 race vehicle that knocked a normal top speed of 246.9 mph over the flying mile at the Salt Flats in 2006.

Honda’s record-setting run is a large determination for the company as it reinforces the content within the Japanese manufacturer that it is able of enormous things if it collections its cognition to it. The action is especially more superb thinking all of the difficulties the team encountered along the path. There were issues with the engine, canopy design, with failed strive at Bonneville Speed Week.

All of these difficulties could’ve compelled Honda to elevate its guardianships and call off the whole situation. But it spent on and the phenomenons have certainly made it all worthy it for Honda. And for what it’s worthy, the accepted record normal top speed wasn’t the swift the faction earned during its run. The streamliner actually went fast on one of its advanced runs, coming a normal top speed of 266 mph. Unfortunately, that strive could not be accepted because the vehicle was not able to replicate the speed on its return run as demanded by FIA rules. Honda commodities have triumphed dozens of motorsports championships throughout the world, dominating tournament at heroic locations from Indianapolis to Monaco, and on surfaces being from the seashores of Dakar to the dust of Carlsbad.

But this ago week, a bold team of youthful Honda people acted to the Salt Flats of Bonneville, Utah to position the swift speed ever saved for a honda vehicle. Not only did the Honda position a brand-new FIA World Record of 261.875mph(1mile), 261.966mph(1km) for a vehicle in its collection (Category-a team-1 collection-4), it affixed a speed faster than any Honda-powered vehicle ever including the record opened by room Honda F1 vehicle at Bonneville in 2006, by using a 660cc engine three cylinder designed for the Honda S660 sports vehicle. The project Bonneville Speed Challenge was internally publicized at Honda R&D in Japan in 2015 and 16 associates were appointed from an excavation of 100 servicemen, including the project leader Keisuke Tsuta, to make the vehicle that would be known as the Honda S-Dream, to attain world speed record with 660cc engine.

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