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Success Story: Tesla

by SRP on December 1, 2023

Just over twenty years after its founding in 2003, Tesla is a company that needs little introduction. Its iconic electric vehicles are nearly ubiquitous on roads all over the world, and certainly in the Bay Area. Thanks to Tesla’s leading-edge battery and manufacturing innovations, sleek designs, and production of increasingly affordable models, no company has been more effective in driving—no pun intended—the adoption of electric vehicles to date.

Tesla has had a long and productive relationship with Stanford Research Park. In 2009, the company opened its first office in the Research Park, located at 3500 Deer Creek. In 2021, it doubled its presence with a second location, this time at 1501 Page Mill. And two years later, Tesla announced they would locate their global engineering and AI headquarters at 3000 Hanover, officially tripling the company’s Research Park footprint since it first located in the Research Park in 2009.

Founded by Martin Eberhard and Marc Tarpenning, the company’s name pays homage to Nikola Tesla, the inventor and electrical engineer best known for building the modern alternating current electricity supply system. In 2008, when Elon Musk took the helm as CEO, the company announced its mission to create products that help accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy.

In 2008, the Tesla Roadster—the company’s first model, as recognizable for its unique design as it was for its near-silent, all-electric engine—took to the road. While the Roadster is no longer in production, Tesla has steadily expanded its fleet to include the Model S, Model 3, Model X, and Model Y. More recently, Tesla has begun delivering the Tesla Semi, an electric semi-truck, with a 500-mile range and three times the power of the typical diesel semi-truck. The long-awaited Cybertruck, designed to look decidedly futuristic, began its market roll-out in November 2023.

In 2016, Tesla began expanding into stationary battery energy storage devices, including grid-scale solar panels and solar panels and shingles for homes. With its subsidiary Tesla Energy, the company leads the battery electric vehicle market and supplies battery energy storage systems to customers across the globe.

Within the walls of each of Tesla’s buildings in the Research Park, Tesla’s teams have pushed the envelope of imagination that much more, as they materially changed driving and batteries as we’d known them. With their global engineering and AI arm now headquartered in the Research Park, we look forward to what step-change will emerge from Tesla next.


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