Elon Musk Flip-Flops on Tesla Big Day

The electric vehicle manufacturer is holding its Artificial Intelligence Day, or AI Day, on September 30.

Elon Musk has accustomed his millions of fans to great promises. 

He hasn’t been shy about promising self-driving vehicles for 2018. 

He was back at it in 2018, when he promised that Version 9 of the FSD feature would begin rolling out in August. He did it again during Tesla Autonomy Day in 2019, proclaiming that “a year from now” there would be “over a million cars with full self-driving, software, everything.”

Musk Downplays Expectations

Tesla, which he runs, still doesn’t sell autonomous cars despite having a driver assistance system – Full Self-Driving known as FSD – that allows the vehicle to perform many maneuvers alone. 

“The currently enabled Autopilot, Enhanced Autopilot and Full Self-Driving features require active driver supervision and do not make the vehicle autonomous,” the manufacturer said on its website. “Full autonomy will be dependent on achieving reliability far in excess of human drivers as demonstrated by billions of miles of experience, as well as regulatory approval, which may take longer in some jurisdictions.”

Recently, Musk promised that humans will be able to live on Mars in a few years.

“Humanity will reach Mars in your lifetime,” he told Twitter users last July.

Admittedly, SpaceX, its aerospace company, has made it possible to relaunch the conquest of space and space tourism, but we still seem a long way from the first human camps on the Red Planet. 

The richest man in the world also promised a machine in which we will download our personalities and our memory. 

Basically, making grandiose promises is a kind of hallmark of the whimsical and charismatic entrepreneur. This absence of modesty is the main criticism made of him by his detractors who consider him megalomaniac.

But now the billionaire has just shown modesty, something very rare with him. Indeed, Musk has just tempered expectations for the second edition of Tesla AI day, scheduled for September 30. 

“Note, this event is meant for recruiting AI & robotics engineers, so will be highly technical,” Musk downplayed on Sept.28 on Twitter, with the poster photo of the event.

The next day, he insisted the purpose of the event was to attract talent. Basically, it’s a job fair.

“As well as advanced chip & supercomputer engineers for next-gen training & inference,” the chief executive officer added on Sept. 29.

The entrepreneur seems to clearly downplay the expectations around the event. 

“There will be lots of technical detail & cool hardware demos,” Musk responded to a Twitter user who asked him for “hints.”

“Ok cool, so folks don’t expect this event to move markets,” summed up a Twitter user.

AI Day Details

Musk’s statements look like a flip-flop because this event, launched in 2021 to show the group’s progress on artificial intelligence, was originally scheduled for mid-August but the tycoon had postponed it because he wanted to make it a huge event.

“Tesla AI Day pushed to Sept 30, as we may have an Optimus prototype working by then,” Musk announced on Twitter on June 2.

“Tesla AI Day #2 will be epic,” he added.

The announcement had filled his fans with optimism.

“He[re] we go. Record qtr [quarter] for deliveries and profits coming for tesla and AI day! $tsla,” Tesla investor Ross Gerber posted on Twitter on Sept. 28.

Optimus, or Tesla Bot, the humanoid robot developed by Tesla’s AI teams, is supposed to be the star of this event. 

But besides Optimus, Musk is also expected to present the latest developments related to Full Self-Driving (FSD) computer and also Dojo, the supercomputer that FSD might use to improve the brains behind Tesla’s driving systems by analyzing the massive data the automaker has garnered from volunteers.

The event, which is being held in Palo Alto, California, will start at 5 p.m. local time, or PT, (8 p.m. ET) and end at 11 p.m. PT, according to invitations sent to guests. Only the first part should be live streamed.

Musk more or less admitted that the masses were likely to be disappointed by the event when a Twitter user made a summary supposedly anticipating all the reactions.  

The symbol TSLAQ is used on social media by the most extreme critics of Musk and Tesla. They are convinced that the manufacturer of electric vehicles will go bankrupt.

“Pretty much. AI/robotics engineers who understand what problems need to be solved will like what they see,” Musk said on Sept.29. 


The billionaire had said in January that a prototype Optimus would be ready by the end of the year and that Tesla planned to market it from 2023.

“I think actually the most important product development we’re doing this year is actually the Optimus humanoid robot. This, I think, has the potential to be more significant than the vehicle business over time,” the tech tycoon said during the first-quarter-earnings call.

This is a big gamble as Musk has struggled to generate much excitement around Optimus. The Optimus concept is fueled by the mogul’s desire to replace humans with robots in his factories. It was introduced in August 2021, during the first Tesla AI Day. 

Optimus looks like a human in a robot suit, nearly six feet tall and weighing 125 pounds. It will use the same AI systems that helped power Tesla vehicles, Musk said at the time.

The Tesla Bot will assist with repetitive tasks around the factory, the company has said. Tesla wants to produce 20 million vehicles annually, compared to almost one million in 2021.

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