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Toyota CEO goes after Tesla and Elon Musk with strange cooking analogy

Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda made rare new comments about Tesla and Elon Musk after the electric automaker has surpassed them as the most valuable automaker in the world.

He may or may not have been really hungry when it made the comments.

During an online conference following Toyota’s latest financial results, CEO Akio Toyoda said about Tesla (via Bloomberg):

Tesla says that their recipe will be the standard in the future, but what Toyota has is a real kitchen and a real chef. We are losing when it comes to the share price, but when it comes to products, we have a full menu that will be chosen by customers.

The CEO continues with the cooking analogy:

They aren’t really making something that’s real, people are just buying the recipe. We have the kitchen and chef, and we make real food.

Tesla is currently valued by the market at over $400 billion while Toyota is worth just over $200 billion.

In 2010, Toyota invested $50 million in Tesla and they brokered a heavily discounted sale of the Nummi factory, which is now Tesla’s Fremont factory.

The automaker sold its stake in Tesla for a good profit in 2017, but it was still only a fraction of what it would be worth today.

Electrek’s Take

Thanks Toyoda, I didn’t know that I have recipes in my driveway instead of Tesla vehicles.

No, but seriously. I’m hungry now with all this cooking stuff..

However, Toyota’s menu is not for me. They are lacking in electric options.

The fact that Tesla is more valuable than Toyota has nothing to do with whatever Toyoda is talking about with his strange cooking analogy, it has to do with the fact that Tesla is dominating the electric market (aka the future of the auto industry), while Toyota is barely dipping its toes in it and distracting itself with hybrids and hydrogen fuel cells.

If I wanted to buy an electric Toyota right now, I’d be all out of luck unless I’m in China, where the Japanese automaker is making a bigger battery-electric push to comply with regulations.

Based on their own official predictions, they plan to sell about a half million battery-electric vehicles per year in 2025.

That’s about what Tesla is making today, and by 2025, Tesla plans to be making millions of electric vehicles per year and they are currently investing in and building the capacity to do that. They also make cool products and are looking at the big picture by including energy generation into their portfolio.

Look no further. That’s what investors are impressed by, and why they value Tesla more than Toyota.

That’s what Toyoda needs to understand. They might have real food now, but it can turn bad and rot if people aren’t interested in that kind of food anymore.

The data might not show them that just yet, but there’s going to be a massive shift in demand from gasoline cars to battery-powered vehicles in the near future, and so far, it looks like Toyota’s kitchen won’t be ready for it.

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