Tesla Now Accepting Bitcoin Payments, Elon Musk Reveals

Elon Musk has announced that Teslas can be purchased with Bitcoin.

The firm's CEO confirmed the move in a statement on Twitter early on Wednesday morning, which gathered nearly 10,000 retweets and 40,000 likes within 10 minutes. He wrote: "You can now buy a Tesla with Bitcoin."

He added that the car company would keep any Bitcoins it receives through such purchases and not convert them into fiat currencies such as the U.S. dollar.

Shortly before Musk's announcement on Wednesday, a Twitter user noticed that Tesla's U.S. website had been updated with a Bitcoin button on its payment page, alongside the options for Apple Pay and card payment.

BREAKING: You can now buy a Tesla with Bitcoin as shown below. $BTC pic.twitter.com/o7P9GD3LTQ

— Sawyer Merritt 📈🚀 (@SawyerMerritt) March 24, 2021

The policy applies only in the U.S. at the moment. Musk said Tesla buyers in other countries would be able to pay with Bitcoin later this year, but did not specify a date.

The move has been expected since Tesla published an SEC filing on February 8 that confirmed it would start accepting Bitcoin as payment "in the near future".

At that time, it was also announced that Tesla had purchased $1.5 billion of the cryptocurrency in order to maintain liquidity.

The company said in the SEC filing it might invest in "certain alternative reserve assets including digital assets, gold bullion, gold exchange-traded funds and other assets as specified in the future.

"Thereafter, we invested an aggregate $1.5 billion in bitcoin under this policy and may acquire and hold digital assets from time to time or long-term."

Musk has voiced support for cryptocurrencies before, particularly Bitcoin and Dogecoin.

He said in a discussion on the Clubhouse app on January 31: "I do at this point think Bitcoin is a good thing, and I am a supporter of Bitcoin.

"I think Bitcoin is really on the verge of getting broad acceptance by conventional finance people."

Musk also acknowledged during the discussion that his statements on cryptocurrency "can really move the market."

Just days earlier, the Tesla and SpaceX CEO had added the hashtag #Bitcoin to his Twitter bio, after which the cryptocurrency's value went up by 20 percent, or around $5,000, in the space of an hour, CNBC reported.

Cryptocurrencies are known for their market volatility. Tesla acknowledged the risk associated with its huge Bitcoin purchase in February, noting in its SEC filing: "The prices of digital assets have been in the past and may continue to be highly volatile, including as a result of various associated risks and uncertainties.

"If we hold digital assets and their values decrease relative to our purchase prices, our financial condition may be harmed."

This story has been updated with more tweets and past comments about cryptocurrency from Elon Musk.

Elon Musk standing by a Tesla
Elon Musk speaks during the launch of the Tesla Model X in September 29, 2015, in Fremont, California. Musk has said the car company will begin accepting Bitcoin from buyers outside the U.S. later in 2021. Justin Sullivan/Getty