TULSA – With a hashtag and webdomain a little too salty for some people’s tastes, a grassroots effort has begun to grab the attention of Tesla founder and CEO Elon Musk in hopes of getting the electric car maker into building one new Cybertruck plant in Tulsa.
The competition appears to be Austin, Texas – though the company has been quite nervous about its decision-making process.
Early reports from an industry publication indicated that Austin has already sewn the facility, but supporters of Tulsa’s efforts to preserve the facility are not buying any of it.
They quickly deployed websites, a Facebook campaign, and Twitter hashtags, often leaning on edgy, youth-centric, progressive topics, to address Musk’s known tendencies toward plain language and political dullness.
Initial buzz efforts also included using office windows in downtown buildings to spell “T4T” at night and people gathering at Skelly Stadium (under social distancing rules) to spell “Tulsa 4 Tesla.” “Spell with their bodies.
Perhaps the most controversial move was to paint the Tesla logo on the chest of the Golden Drill in Expo Square.
The famous statue now also has a Tesla belt buckle; In addition, Elon Musk’s image was applied to the face of the drill using a technology similar to that used for vehicle packaging.
Some find it ironic that an icon of the petroleum industry was used to lure an electric car manufacturer to what was once dubbed the “oil capital of the world.”
Others say Tulsa drove the transition from literal horsepower to the internal combustion engine a century ago and is now ready to tackle the wave of technology that many believe will one day replace fossil fuels.
By late Wednesday afternoon, Tesla and its fiery CEO hadn’t directly commented on Tulsa’s campaign.