Elon Musk called Jeff Bezos a copy cat after Amazon acquires Zoox

  • Tesla CEO Elon Musk called Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos for a cat copy on Friday after news of Amazon’s $ 1.2 billion acquisition of autonomous startup Zoox broke the news.
  • The tweet read “. @ JeffBezos is a copy 🐈 haha” with a yellow cat icon instead of the word cat.
  • The Amazon acquisition is a step forward in autonomous driving, an arena that Musk’s Tesla has been trying to master.
  • Visit the Business Insider home page for more stories.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk criticized Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos on Twitter on Friday just a day after The Financial Times reported that the Seattle tech giant reported the acquisition of autonomous taxi firm Zoox for $ 1.2. billion

In the tweet, Musk called Bezos a copy cat, but used a yellow cat icon instead of the word “cat.”

Amazon rejected Business Insider’s request for comment.

The comment comes as the acquisition of Amazon puts the company on a more level playing field with Tesla in the realm of autonomous driving.

As Business Insider’s Mark Matousek reported in late May, Amazon’s interest in Zoox was sparked to help complete its package delivery process.

Zoox vehicles are designed for transportation, unlike Tesla’s, which are designed to go directly to consumers.

Tesla and Zoox have exchanged punches before. Musk claimed in 2019 that by mid-2020, his company’s autonomous cars would be fully operational without human interaction, meaning drivers would not have to look at the road while driving. At the Business Insider IGNITION 2019 conference, Zoox co-founder and CTO Jesse Levinson said there is no chance of that happening.

“They don’t have enough sensors or computers to do that, given the remotely known technology that exists that humans have created,” Levinson said at the conference. “And by the way they are great cars, the [Tesla autopilot system] on the highway, I think it’s the best there is … I think if [Musk] focused on that aspect, it would be better received. “

Tesla’s autopilot feature, even in its “Full Self-Driving” options, is not yet fully autonomous and still requires human interaction.

Zoox was recently valued at $ 3.2 billion. Like other autonomous vehicle companies, Zoox has been affected by the economic consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic and laid off 120 employees in April. The company has reportedly had trouble raising capital recently, and this deal could help it stay afloat.