Tesla CEO Elon Musk took a jab at Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos on Twitter Friday, just one day after the Financial Times revealed the Seattle tech giant acquired Zoox for $1.2 billion.
Musk named Bezos a copycat in the post, but used a yellow cat icon instead of “cat.”
The tweet comes as Amazon’s acquisition positions the company in the self-driving arena in a more charged sandbox with Tesla.
Zoox’s cars, unlike Tesla’s, are designed to go directly to customers for ride-hailing.
Tesla and Zoox traded before. In 2019, Musk said his company’s self-driving cars would be fully operational without human intervention by mid-2020, meaning drivers wouldn’t have to look at the road while driving. Zoox co-founder and Chief Technology Officer Jesse Levinson said there was no risk of that happening at Business Insider’s 2019 IGNITION conference.
“They don’t have enough sensors or computers to do that given any remotely known technology that exists that humans have ever created,” Levinson said at the conference, adding “they’re great cars” and that the Tesla Autopilot System “on the freeway is, I think, the best out there … I think if he focused on that aspect it would be better received.”
Also in its “full self-driving” options, Tesla’s Autopilot feature is not yet fully autonomous and involves human involvement.
Zoox’s recently valued $3.2 billion. Unlike other autonomous vehicle firms, Zoox took a hit from the COVID-19 pandemic’s economic effects, laying off 120 workers in April. The company recently struggled to raise capital, according to Axios, and this deal could help it stay afloat.
Reported by Business Insider.
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