Tesla accepting Bitcoin means it stacks 0.7 BTC per Model 3 sold for crypto

A black and white image of two Tesla cars with a Bitcoin symbol peeping out from behind them

Tesla now accepts payment in Bitcoin — a move that boosted the cryptocurrency’s price up to 5% on Wednesday.

The electric vehicle giant teased Bitcoin payments in an SEC filing from February, but self-styled ‘Technoking’ Elon Musk finally made it official via Twitter earlier today.

Musk also said Tesla will use Bitcoin with open-source software and run its own Bitcoin nodes — which means the company directly participates in the blockchain network’s validation process.

But most interestingly, Musk said Tesla’s keeping all of the Bitcoin paid to the company in Bitcoin, rather than convert to fiat currency on receipt.

Let’s do the Tesla math…

  • Tesla’s Model 3 sells for $37,990 — about 0.68 BTC at Bitcoin’s current price.
  • As of the latest estimates, Tesla holds 48,000 BTC ($2.58 billion).
  • So, Tesla needs to sell about 70,000 units of its cheapest model to double its Bitcoin stash.

While it’s tough to say just how many Bitcoin users will actually spend their crypto on a new car, the company did sell around 400,000 Model 3s last year.

Bitcoin would need to account for around 20% of Model 3 sales last year for it to achieve our hypothetical.

[Read more: Chasing candles — here’s where Bitcoin’s ‘Tesla pump’ ranks in history]

For what it’s worth, the price of Tesla’s Model Y converts to around 0.72 BTC ($39,990) at the moment, the Model S to 1.24 BTC ($69,420), and the Model X to 1.44 BTC ($79,990).

The option to pay in Bitcoin is currently only available to US customers, but Musk says it will be available elsewhere later this year.

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