Estimated Costs of the Tesla Bot Optimus

An important question when sizing the opportunity of humanoid robots is the following:

What are the estimated production costs of the Tesla Bot?

💰 NOT FINANCIAL ADVISE: I’m not a financial advisor. I don’t give financial advice. I hold TSLA and other mentioned securities in my portfolio.

Let’s start with an estimation by two credible analysts from the Tesla community: Cern Basher and TSLATALK (see video below): 👇


The image shows a comparison of the potential production costs between the Tesla Optimus Humanoid Bot and the Tesla Model 3 vehicle.

💰 The total estimated cost to produce the Tesla Optimus Bot is listed as $11,840. This cost breakdown includes individual components such as a 2.3kWh 2170 Battery Pack ($300), Cameras ($400), HW4 Computer ($500), Castings ($250), Actuators ($5,250), Wiring ($200), Assembly ($500), and various other components including a Screen Interface, Machined Hands, Speaker, Charge Port, Plastic/Rubber Outer Structure, and a Sensor Suite.

This cost represents a 39% margin over the cost of materials and components for the Tesla Model 3, which is shown to have a production cost of $30,000.

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ARK Invest

Source: ARK Invest

ARK Invest in their latest Big Ideas 2024 reported costs of humanoid robots between roughly $8k and $100k (see graphic top right). This is a wide range but can serve as a rough roadmap for the production costs of humanoid robots:

  • Humanoid production costs of ~$100k at the beginning of the scaling cycle, and
  • ~$8k later in the scaling cycle with millions or potentially billions of robots out there.

Most likely bots will scale according to Wright’s Law, i.e., the costs will decline with every cumulative doubling of production.

For example, industrial bots have been dropping in costs by 50% for every cumulative doubling in production:

Source: ARK Invest

Let’s apply the same figure of 50% cost declines for every cumulative doubling in production, starting with ~50 humanoids in 2024 at Tesla at an initial costs to produce those of less than $900 million. How do I know? Well, have a look at their latest quarterly report:

I believe $900 million is a gross overestimation of the costs of producting 50 robots initially but let’s start with this number to analyze the costs declines over time assuming a Wright’s Law curve:

🤖 TLDR: So when crossing a billion produced bots, the cost per bot may be roughly $5k, assuming a 28% learning rate for every cumulative doubling of production like in the battery industry.

Here’s the full table:

Cumulative Humanoid BotsProduction Costs per Bot (28% Learning Rate)

In other words, the inflation-adjusted costs to produce a humanoid robot will decline forever with the invention of new technologies, scale effects, learning effects, material science, technological breakthroughs and evolution, as well as more competition.

Numerically, the costs may go up due to debasement of the currency but all figures in this article are meant inflation-adjusted.

By the way, these are some reasons for the learning curves in case you’re wondering where the cost declines come from:


ChatGPT’s Estimate of the Costs of a Tesla Bot

🤖 ChatGPT: “Based on the image provided and general knowledge of robotics, here is a list of components that may be included in the construction of a humanoid robot like the Tesla bots, along with estimated costs for each component. Please note that these are rough estimates and actual costs can vary widely based on the quality, quantity, and specific technology used.”


  1. Structural Frame and Chassis:
    • Materials (Aluminum, Steel, Plastics): $500
    • Manufacturing (Casting, Machining): $1,000
  2. Actuation System (Motors and Servos):
    • Motors for limb movement: $3,000
    • Smaller servos for fingers and intricate movements: $500
  3. Power Supply:
    • Battery Pack: $300 (as per the previous cost breakdown)
  4. Sensors:
    • Position, Velocity, and Acceleration (IMU): $200
    • Proximity sensors (Ultrasonic, Infrared): $150
    • Touch sensors: $100
    • Temperature sensors: $50
  5. Computing and Processing Hardware:
    • Main onboard computer (CPU, GPU for AI processing): $1,000
    • Secondary microcontrollers for limb control: $500
  6. Communication Systems:
    • Wireless modules (Wi-Fi, Bluetooth): $100
  7. Vision System:
    • Cameras: $400 (as per the previous cost breakdown)
    • LIDAR or depth sensors: $1,000
  8. Audio System:
    • Microphones: $100
    • Speakers: $50
  9. Outer Shell and Aesthetics:
    • External Panels (Plastic/Rubber): $400
    • Paint and Finishing: $150
  10. Hands and End Effectors:
    • Machined hands: $500 (as per the previous cost breakdown)
    • Grippers or specialized tools: $300
  11. Wiring and Electrical:
    • Wiring harnesses: $200
    • Connectors and switches: $100
  12. Software and Development:
    • Operating system and basic software: $500
    • AI and machine learning models: $1,000
    • Development costs for programming: $2,000
  13. Testing and Quality Assurance:
    • Component testing: $300
    • Full system testing: $500
  14. Labor and Assembly:
    • Labor cost for assembly: $500 (as per the previous cost breakdown)
    • Quality control: $300
  15. Miscellaneous Components:
    • Fasteners, adhesives, insulation materials: $200

Estimated Total Cost:

  • Total of the components and systems: $14,800
  • Labor, development, and testing: $3,300
  • Unforeseen costs and contingencies (approx. 10%): $1,810

Overall Estimated Cost to Make One Unit:

  • Approximately $19,910

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