CNBC may have found the last guy you want to talk to at a party. Siraj Raval is using his 2018 Tesla Model 3 to mine cryptocurrencies and says he’s made up to $US800 (A$1,117) a month in the process.
But how did he do it… and more importantly, was it worth it? We’ll get to the second part of the question in a bit. As for how, Raval says he plugged an inverter into a power socket in his car and used it to power a computer running Bitcoin-mining software. He has also hooked up GPUs to the Model 3’s frunk and ran the machines off of the car’s internal battery.
He spends about 20 hours a day mining with his Tesla Batteries and that he pays between $US30 (A$42) and $US60 (A$84) a month to charge the batteries.
Even though hacking into a Tesla to mine Bitcoin (an insane sentence) risks voiding the car’s warranty, Raval told CNBC that it’s worth it.
But again… was it worth it? Well, according to CNBC, profits depend a lot on when the driver bought the car. Another Tesla Crypto-miner, Chris Allessi. He purchased his car before January 2017, meaning he was grandfathered into Tesla’s free and unlimited supercharging for the life of the car.
It should be mentioned that it takes an insane amount of energy to mine bitcoin and other cryptos.
Allessi said that in 2018 he would make about $US10 (A$14) worth of bitcoin in a 60-hour period – which was all profit because he didn’t have to pay for the energy.
Even thought it was profitable, He says it was hardly worth it.
“Why would you want to put that kind of wear and tear on a $US40,000 ($55,860) to $US100,000 ($139,650) car?” Allessi said. “And right now, even though the price for bitcoin has gone up dramatically, so has the difficulty level…In the same amount of time with the exact same equipment, I’m probably looking at $US1 or $US2 worth of bitcoin.”
It’s a different story when it comes to Raval’s Model 3… which he has to pay to charge. He still maintain he makes between $US400 ($559) and $US800 ($1,117) a month. Though some aren’t sure how valid those numbers are.
Another Tesla Hacker and crypto miner, Thomas Sohmers, who says he first hacked a Model 3 in 2018, told CNBC those kinds of profits aren’t possible.
“The best estimate I would have for the hashrate for the GPU in the Model 3 would be around 7-10 MH/s. Currently, at 10 MH/s, that would generate revenue of about $US13.38 ($19) worth of ether, before any expenses,” Sohmers told CNBC.
Despite this, Raval says mining crypto with his Tesla isn’t a gimmick. He believes he’ll be able to make his Model 3 a fully autonomous robotaxi that earns crypto whenever it’s not driving. Yes, you read that correctly.
Please keep in mind that we are probably decades away from Teslas being able to drive themselves, despite what the Crypto-memelord Elon Musk has to say.