After making roughly $180 million as a cofounder of PayPal, he helped get Tesla off the ground in 2004 with an initial investment of $6.3 million. The startup’s audacious business plan had three steps. First, develop a high-end, high-performance sports car to prove that electric vehicles were both cool and feasible. Second, roll out a luxury sedan that would compete with high-end brands like BMW and Mercedes. Third, produce hundreds of thousands of low-cost electric vehicles for the masses.