For years, the automakers told the world that making an all-electric vehicle was hopeless and impossible. We accepted it. Then Toyota crawled with a hybrid (electric + petrol). That was a quintessential moment that electrons, not just hydrocarbons, would move cars. But a new era began with the best in his generation – Elon Musk – when he took over, and redesigned the automobile industry. Today, Tesla is worth more than GM and Ford combined. Samuel Nwite goes deeper in this piece on how it all began, and why the future belongs to electrons, and not hydrocarbons, when it comes to moving people from one spot to another. Tesla is eclipsing competitors by moving beyond customer needs and expectations to customer perceptions. In the mini MBA which begins Feb 10 (register here), participants will read a flash case on Tesla.