As I’m sure you’ve heard by now, Elon Musk dissed Apple pretty hard this week. In an in interview with Handelsblatt earlier this week, he not only claimed that the electric car that Apple is reportedly working won’t be a threat to Tesla, he also said that the former Tesla engineers that Apple has hired to work on the car simply didn’t have what it takes to work at Tesla. Basically, he said Apple only hires the people Tesla fires, but yesterday he took to Twitter to back away from those comments a bit.
Tesla founder and CEO Elon Musk took to Twitter on Friday to conduct a bit of damage control after making seemingly disparaging comments about Apple’s automotive ambitions and hiring practices. On Thursday, German publication Handelsblatt printed an interview in which Musk derided Apple’s attempts to build an electric vehicle, insinuating the finished result would be a sub-par product akin to Apple Watch. The remarks caused a kerfuffle after mainstream media picked up on some particularly juicy quotes. “They have hired people we’ve fired,” Musk said of Apple. “We always jokingly call Apple the ‘Tesla Graveyard.’ If you don’t make it at Tesla, you go work at Apple. I’m not kidding.” Musk qualified that statement today, saying, “Yo, I don’t hate Apple. It’s a great company with a lot of talented people. I love their products and I’m glad they’re doing an EV.” While he may love Apple’s products, Musk yesterday alluded the company was incapable of breaking into the automotive market. Cars are much more complex than consumer electronics, he explained, and Apple can’t simply ask Foxconn to build one.