Musk Gets Tesla.com Domain Name After Waiting a Decade

  • Silicon Valley engineer gives up domain name after 24 years
  • Tesla.com Internet traffic now goes to Tesla Motors website

The Entire History of Tesla in Two Minutes

Elon Musk has finally gotten his hands on the Tesla.com domain name that has been owned by a Silicon Valley engineer and virtually unused for 24 years.

The Tesla.com domain was owned by a Stu Grossman since 1992 and Tesla Motors Inc. Chief Executive Musk had to settle for the slightly more cumbersome Teslamotors.com. A Tesla spokeswoman confirmed Friday that the company now has the domain. Punch Tesla.com into a browser and traffic is directed to Teslamotors.com.

The ever-persistent Musk got a domain that he wanted, which would give him the liberty to change the company’s name to Tesla if he chooses to later on. When asked last year at the launch of Tesla Energy if he wanted to change the company’s name to Tesla from Tesla Motors -- to reflect that the company’s gigafactory would soon be building stationary batteries -- Musk said there were domain issues. Not anymore.

The move gives Tesla Motors a more broad handle on the Web just as the company is pushing beyond its electric-car business and is selling battery units for homes and power utilities.

It is not clear if Grossman sold the name to Tesla. He bought the domain years ago because of his affinity for inventor Nikola Tesla and kept it for personal use, said John Berryhill, an attorney in Pennsylvania who represented Grossman in dispute with another company, Tesla Industries Inc., a decade ago. Grossman had been approached by many people about giving up the name, Berryhill said.

“Mr. Grossman is an engineer and a big fan of Nikola Tesla,” Berryhill said. “He’s had it, and now Tesla the auto company got it. I would surmise that this was a voluntary arrangement,”

Grossman could not be immediately reached for comment. Tesla spokeswoman Khobi Brooklyn declined to comment on the domain change beyond confirming that the company has acquired it.

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