Should GM Buy Tesla?

Gm And Tesla?
A partnership could be good for both companies, and for consumers

Why This Could Be a Good Thing, For Them and For You

News surfaced recently that General Motors may be interested in buying Tesla, the innovative mold-breaking luxury electric car maker. While we would be sorry to see Elon Musk exit the car business so soon—taking his innovative thinking on to other ventures—Tesla could be very, very good for GM, and GM could be good for Tesla. Here’s why:

The marriage could result in Tesla’s innovative thinking on steroids: Scaling the Tesla process to GM’s operations could fundamentally change and improve every process and product and bring even more innovation into GM’s full product line, both in the cabin and under the hood.

Even more dynamic growth: While GM has dramatically improved its products, efficiency and quality over the last decade and its sales and financial health reflect this, the car maker could experience even more dynamic growth and improvement by adding a fully evolved and robust division like Tesla.

Redesigning the dealership experience: Tesla’s store locations are  based in malls and office parks–where customers would rather be—and service is performed when and where it’s convenient for the customer (Tesla ‘Rangers’ can even come to your home to service your car) including updating software via wifi. This approach could fundamentally change how we buy and service our cars.

Tesla’s charging technology and infrastructure is a great asset: With hundreds of charging stations already in place and state governments around the country planning for more, much of it at Tesla’s prompting, the ability for customers to charge their vehicles—Teslas, Sparks and more—will be greatly enhanced, thus making the sale of EVs more desirable.

When luxury brands lead, everybody wins: luxury innovations quickly become the aspiration and often the standard, and since Tesla’s innovations have become the darling of the affluent, these ideas will become more commonplace. It would be to GM’s advantage to integrate these ideas rather than reinvent or replicate.

Another luxury brand added to the portfolio: While GM has done some great things with Cadillac and Buick, not all luxury customers are the same; Tesla has tapped a whole new customer group and is in the process of training even more with its unique blend of green and prestige. The growth of this customer base could be quite lucrative for both the near and far future.

No need to build at Tesla-buster: It’s been said that GM has been targeting Tesla with its future development plans, and the purchase of Tesla would fast-track that process, which would be nothing short of great for the consumer.

If General Motors were still the old boys club of yesteryear, the idea of buying Tesla would probably cause riots in the java shops and green spaces of Silicon Valley; the old GM was known to sacrifice the little machines in favor of the big machine. But key to GM’s turnaround has been its reinvention of itself, its leadership and it’s contract with its customer, and Tesla would—and should—fit right in.

And if GM decides it isn’t interested in buying Tesla? The company is still a good fit for Detroit: Ford and Chrysler, both newly reinvented, innovative and changing the way cars drive our world forward, could both draw immense benefit from being Tesla’s new parent.



Journalist, entrepreneur and mom. Expertise includes new cars, family cars, 3-row SUVs, child passenger car seats and automotive careers... More about Scotty Reiss