Bitcoin paid to Tesla (TSLA) will not be converted by the electric car company into regular currency, he added in a subsequent tweet. Musk said that the option to pay by bitcoin will be available outside the United States later this year.
The price of a single bitcoin climbed nearly 3% to hit $56,242 shortly after Musk’s tweet — more than enough to buy an entry level Tesla Model 3, which costs just under $40,000. Tesla’s most expensive vehicle, the Model X Plaid, starts at around $120,000 — slightly more than two bitcoin.
Dan Ives, an analyst at Wedbush Securities, said “this is a seminal moment for Tesla and for the crypto world.”
“We expect less than 5% of transactions to be through Bitcoin over the next 12 to 18 months however this could move higher over time as crypto acceptance starts to ramp over the coming years,” he added.
Tesla (TSLA) had previously signaled its plans to accept the digital currency from buyers. In its annual filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) last month, the company said that it expects “to begin accepting bitcoin as a form of payment for our products in the near future … initially on a limited basis.”
It also said it had invested $1.5 billion in bitcoin as part of a strategy to “invest a portion of [the company’s] cash in certain specified alternative reserve assets.”
Since then, the company has given Zach Kirkhorn, its chief financial officer, a new title: “Master of Coin.” Musk, meanwhile, gained the extra title of “Technoking of Tesla”, according to a SEC filing.
Musk, who has in the past expressed skepticism about cryptocurrencies, said in an interview on social app Clubhouse earlier this year that he thinks bitcoin is on the verge of “getting broad acceptance by conventional finance people.” He said he should have bought the digital currency eight years ago.
— Chris Isidore contributed reporting.