Tesla Motors, Inc. (TSLA - Free Report) announced that it will be sharing many of its patents with its rivals in an attempt to boost the development of electric vehicles. However, according to AP, CEO Elon Musk mentioned that automakers who use Tesla’s patented technology must not file intellectual property lawsuits in the future.
This year Tesla has been issued 203 patents, which cover batteries and other key features of its electric vehicles. 280 more patent applications are pending in various countries. None of Telsa’s patents will expire before 2026.
At present, Tesla produces electric systems for Daimler AG (DDAIF - Free Report) and Toyota Motor Corporation (TM - Free Report) . This open sharing of patents will further enhance Tesla’s collaboration with other automakers.
Apart from patents, Tesla will reportedly share the designs of its Supercharger system so that other electric car manufacturers can equip their cars with the necessary specifications, thus allowing their owners to use the Superchargers, as per engadget.com. However, this sharing of design may lead to disclosure of some intellectual property about Tesla’s vehicles’ components.
According to CEO Elon Musk, the interested electric vehicle producers must subscribe to Tesla’s business model related to the Superchargers and must contribute to the maintenance and running costs of the same. Musk also clarifies that the costs are not very high, as many of the locations are rent free, and some of the Superchargers are powered by solar panels. According to AP, Tesla is planning to form a Supercharger-related partnership with BMW.
Electric vehicles occupy a very small portion of vehicles sold in the U.S. market. Tesla believes that the low sales figure is due to concerns over the vehicles’ range and dearth of charging stations. The stability in gasoline prices has added to the woes as it has marred electric vehicle sales.
Expansion of Supercharger coverage should make more buyers interested in electric vehicles. At present, Tesla has about 100 Superchargers spread across North America and Europe. The company has recently opened a Supercharger network in China and plans to open more than 200 all over the world including Japan.
Tesla currently carries a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell). Fox Factory Holding Corp (FOXF - Free Report) , carrying a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), is a better-ranked stock worth considering in the same industry.