Electric car maker Tesla has become the first car maker to ever cross the $1 trillion market value threshold, after its share price continued to climb.

Tesla now joins a very exclusive club alongside the likes of Apple, Amazon, Microsoft and Alphabet, after its share price exceeded $1,000 a share for the first time and surpassed the $1 trillion market valuation.

The 13 percent rise in Tesla’s share price was helped by Hertz, after CNBC reported the car rental giant confirming it would buy 100,000 Tesla cars by the end of 2022, in order to beef up its electric-vehicle fleet.

Image credit: Tesla

Trillion valuation

The Hertz deal for 100,000 cars will bring in a staggering $4.2 billion for Tesla.

Shares in Tesla rallied on the news and ended trading on Monday at $1,024 per share, valuing the car maker at $1.055 trillion.

This makes Tesla the world’s most valuable car maker by a huge margin.

To put that into context, rival car maker Toyota is only valued at $242 billion.

Volkswagen meanwhile is valued at $134 billion, and Ford is valued at only $63.5bn as of Tuesday 26 October 2021.

CEO Elon Musk noted the record valuation in a tweet, saying only “Wild $T1mes!”.

Self-driving beta (FSD)

But it has not been all good news, after the electric car maker on Sunday announced it would pull the latest version of its Full Self-Driving (FSD) beta software, less than a day after its release.

Tesla currently sells a Full Self-Driving capability (or FSD) package for $10,000 or $199 per month in the United States, to select people.

However, it is not approved by US officials, and still requires a driver behind the wheel paying attention and ready to takeover.

Tesla took the decision to temporary pull the beta, after users reportedly complained of false collision warnings and other issues.

The decision was again noted by Elon Musk on Twitter.

“Seeing some issues with 10.3, so rolling back to 10.2 temporarily,” he tweeted. “Please note, this is to be expected with beta software. It is impossible to test all hardware configs in all conditions with internal QA, hence public beta.”

“Regression in some left turns at traffic lights found by internal QA in 10.3. Fix in work, probably releasing tomorrow,” he added.

On Monday he tweeted that “10.3.1 rolling out now.”

Regulatory scrutiny

The short setback comes as Tesla is under regulatory scrutiny over the safety of its semi-autonomous driving technology.

Earlier this month Tesla was asked by US federal safety watchdogs why it had not issued a recall to address software updates made to its Autopilot driver-assistance system, designed to improve the vehicles’ ability to detect emergency vehicles.

It comes after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in August opened a official safety probe into Tesla’s Autopilot system, after a series of crashes involving Tesla models and emergency vehicles.

FSD is a step up from Tesla’s Autopilot.

Meanwhile, that same month Elon Musk had admitted in a tweet that FSD Beta 9.2, was “actually not great”.

That statement was ironic, if one thinks back to July 2020, when at the opening of Shanghai’s annual World Artificial Intelligence Conference (WAIC), Musk said that Tesla was “very close” to achieving level 5 autonomous driving technology.

Level 5 is the holy grail of autonomous driving technology, as level 5 vehicles will not require human intervention, and need for a human drivers is eliminated.

Indeed, it is said that level 5 cars won’t even have steering wheels or acceleration/braking pedals.

These cars will be free from geofencing, and will be able to drive anywhere, and do anything that normal car with a human driver can do.

Tom Jowitt

Tom Jowitt is a leading British tech freelancer and long standing contributor to Silicon UK. He is also a bit of a Lord of the Rings nut...

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