Tesla stock worth more than Big 3 combined?

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If you’re in search of the ultimate Tesla (TSLA) bull, look no further than Trip Chowdhry of Global Equities Research. He has a $385 Tesla price target. That number’s not based on current car sales; it’s based on the notion that the world’s entire transportation ecosystem is on the cusp of a revolution. And Trip Chowdhry believes Tesla’s leading the charge.

“As Alibaba has quickly eclipsed the market cap of Wal-Mart,” Trip writes, “Tesla’s market cap can exceed that of the so-called Big 3 automakers combined — General Motors, Ford and Chrysler.”

Tesla’s not just building cars, he says, it’s building an ecosystem replete with supercharging stations, cloud integration via its connected cars and a battery empire in the Gigafactory (which will produce more battery capacity in 2020 than the entire world did in 2013).

The Big 3 on the other hand – General Motors, Ford and Chrysler – are focused on incremental improvements to the existing infrastructure.

“I think these auto companies — Porsche, BMW, GM, Ford — will be pretty much out of business in five to 10 years from now unless these companies fire their CEOs and hire a 20- to 30-year-old smart, aggressive, visionary entrepreneur to run the company,” Chowdhry says. “That is their only solution. Not MBAs from Harvard or other business schools should be running these companies anymore.”

The New Transportation market

Chowdry believes we’re on the cusp of a new way of transportation. We’re not just improving gas mileage anymore, we’re doing away with it. That means that manufacturers of gas-powered vehicles must adapt or die – and they must do it quickly.

“As things are right now, we do think about 70 to 80 percent of this new market, new transportation market — which includes superchargers, autonomous cars and gigafactories — Tesla could own almost 70 to 80 percent of this market,” Chowdhry tells Benzinga. “That’s close to $700 to $800 billion market opportunity.”

Of course, it’s hard to imagine a world without Ford, GM, Porsche and BMW. But Chowdhry says that could be exactly where we’re heading. The old Big 3 just might be replaced with the new Big 3: Tesla, Apple (AAPL) and Google (GOOG). It’s an interesting theory.

The auto industry “has been sleeping for more than 100 years,” Chowdhry says, and Tesla’s forcing them to reevaluate everything.

Of course, Tesla’s going to have to do some serious scaling to pound the Big 3 to smithereens. In 2010, GM – the world’s largest car manufacturer – sold 8.4 million cars. Tesla hopes to sell 500,000 cars by 2020. If Tesla truly does dethrone any of the Big 3 in five to ten years, it’ll need help along the way.

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