Elon Musk

Automaker Tesla is now accepting Bitcoin, in a move expected to bring further legitimacy to the cryptocurrency.

CEO Elon Musk, who recently revealed a new title as “Technoking” of Tesla, posted a tweet on Wednesday where he told his followers that “You can now buy a Tesla with Bitcoin”.

He explained that Bitcoin paid to the company will not be converted into regular fiat currency.

Bitcoin’s price has increased over 800 per cent since the beginning of last year, and jumped nearly 3 percent soon after Mr Musk’s tweet.

Dan Ives, an analyst at Wedbush Securities, told CNN Business that “this is a seminal moment for Tesla and for the crypto world.”

In its annual filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Tesla had signaled its plans to accept the digital currency from buyers, saying it expects “to begin accepting bitcoin as a form of payment for our products in the near future … initially on a limited basis.”

Mr Musk said that payment by Bitcoin will be accepted outside the USA “later this year”, and will be handled by “internal and open source software” through nodes operated directly by Tesla.

Tesla had previously invested $1.5 billion in Bitcoin, although it noted that “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”.

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