WASHINGTON (AP) — The chief executive of electric car maker Tesla Motors says his company plans to pay back an Energy Department loan in half the time required by the government.
CEO Elon Musk said Tesla plans to pay off the $465 million federal loan in five years, rather than 10 years. Musk made the comment Tuesday at a summit on energy innovation, where he appeared on stage with Energy Secretary Steven Chu and defended the Obama administration's clean energy program.
Noting the firestorm of criticism aimed at the Energy Department after the bankruptcy of solar company Solyndra, which received a $528 million federal loan, Musk said it was only fair that the administration wins praise for success stories such as Tesla. He said the company is on course to earn a small profit this quarter.
In his appearance at the ARPA-E summit, Musk also said the Palo Alto, Calif., company lost as much as $100 million in market valuation as a result of a public spat with The New York Times following a negative review of its all-electric Model S car.
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