During the company’s 2020 fourth-quarter earnings call on Wednesday Musk was reminded that he’d once said he’d step down as CEO and become Chief Architect once Tesla had a mass-market car in production, like the Model 3, and was asked if that was still the plan.
“Well, I expect to be CEO of Tesla for several years,” Musk said.
“I think there's still a lot that I'm super excited about doing. And I think it would be hard to leave.”
Musk said “nobody is or should be CEO forever,” but that Tesla’s mission to accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy is still in progress and he’s not quite ready to call it a day, even though the “amount of work required to be CEO of Tesla is insane.”
“I definitely do more technical work that is typical for a CEO, so it would be nice to have more time on my hands as opposed to just working day and night, from when I get up to when I go to sleep seven days a week, pretty intense.”
Musk does manage to find some leisure time for himself, however, like when he was recently seen hanging out in a maskless group in Austin, Tex., that included comedians Joe Rogan, Michelle Wolf and Dave Chappelle shortly before Chappelle announced he’d tested positive for COVID-19.
Musk reiterated his view that the shift to a sustainable energy future requires clean energy generation and storage, which Tesla provides through its solar and stationary battery products, plus electric transportation.
“If you have those three things, we've got a very bright future with respect to energy and the environment. So a long way to go on that. And so I'm still very much fired up to work on that,” he said.
Musk also said he supported nuclear fission, as long as the reactor is secure from the dangers posed by bad weather, but that the zero-emission hydrogen fuel cell powertrains being developed by several of his competitors are just “crazy” and that his battery-powered trucks are a better solution.