The martyr of Tesla MotorsHaving laid off 75-some employees and run his electric carmaker's cash balance down to $9 million, what is Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk busying himself with? Conducting a witch hunt to find who leaked Tesla's financials to Valleywag. The Truth About Cars has published an email it claims is from Musk, which includes a letter apology from R&D director Peng Zhou. The only thing that's curious: Our tipster said he'd been at Tesla for four years. Zhou has only been there for two years. In Musk's haste to find someone to blame, did he extract a forced confession from the wrong man?
W: Letter of Apology Elon Musk Sent: Monday, November 03, 2008 4:22 PM To: Everybody Below is what I believe to be a sincere apology from Peng Zhou for the leak to Valleywag. To: Elon Musk Subject: Re: Letter of Apology ——————————————————————————————- Dear Tesla Motors Employees, Tesla Motors is a great company and is pioneering the green revolution. I have always been a proud Tesla employee and we all worked extremely hard towards the company mission. Throughout past two years, I also took a wild ride in the great emotional roller-coaster of WhiteStar 1.0, 2.0 and Model S. Having driven Model S mule few times, I truly believe this is the vehicle that will change the world. However, macro economic climate changed so dramatically and Model S is getting delayed and the company is refocusing. The past month has been very difficult, sitting through planning meetings and watch employees make in or out of the layoff list. It is so sad to lose 87 employees in a week. I became very upset and did the very foolish thing of writing a letter to Valleywag. I have never thought this letter would create such an upsetting situation for Tesla Motors and I should have never sent that letter. When Elon asked the originator of the letter to step forward, I should have done so. I am deeply sorry things happened this way. I have submitted my resignation with my manager, who had no knowledge of this. I’ll try my best to make situations better for Tesla Motors. Again, my sincere apologies. Best Regards, Peng