Elon Musk has lengthy solid Tesla Inc. as a tech firm, however the coronavirus pandemic—and his battle to renew manufacturing—present that the Silicon Valley automobile maker nonetheless has a minimum of as a lot in widespread with Detroit because it does with the tech giants down the highway.
The Tesla chief’s choice to disobey California authorities and resume some work on the electric-vehicle maker’s lone U.S. meeting plant has change into the highest-profile standoff between enterprise and authorities because the nation debates how and whether or not to reopen the economic system.
Mr. Musk has been on the ground of the San Francisco Bay Space manufacturing facility this week to welcome employees again. He has dared authorities to arrest him or halt manufacturing. Thus far, they haven’t.
Tensions between Mr. Musk and California officers have been steadily rising since Michigan Gretchen Whitmer final week mentioned she was permitting manufacturing facility work to renew. Ms. Whitmer’s transfer cleared the way in which for General Motors Co., Ford Motor Co. and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV to carry again some staff this week and prepared their North American factories with the acknowledged aim of resuming automobile manufacturing beginning Could 18.