During a Toyota Motors earnings call on Friday, executives answered questions about how they plan to compete in the expanding field of electric vehicles, and took a potshot at Tesla’s sky-high valuation.
Toyota President Akio Toyoda acknowledged that Tesla’s valuation of around $400 billion is sky high, exceeding that of all seven Japanese automakers combined.
He also said Toyota could learn from Tesla’s success with investors, and its business model, which includes revenue from electric vehicles, regulatory credits, software and renewable energy products.
But, the exec went on to compare Tesla’s business to a restaurant still promoting its recipes, while Toyota is more like a restaurant already serving a huge number of customers.
“I am hesitant to say this — Tesla’s business, if you want to use the analogy, is like that of a kitchen and a chef,” Toyoda said.
“They have not created a real business in the real world yet. They are trying to trade recipes. The chef is saying ‘Our recipe is going to become the standard of the world in the future!’ At Toyota, we have a real kitchen and a real chef too, and are creating the dishes already. There are customers, who are very picky about what they like to eat, sitting in front of us, and eating our dishes already.”