The carmaker also plans to accept bitcoin as payment for its cars, the company revealed in a regulatory filing published on Monday.

Musk has in recent weeks expressed increased interest in bitcoin. Last week the price of bitcoin rose after Musk labelled it a “good thing”; given Tesla’s now-disclosed large purchases of bitcoin, the price rise is likely to have directly benefited the comany.

Tesla said the move would “provide us with more flexibility to further diversify and maximize returns on our cash that is not required to maintain adequate operating liquidity”.

Tesla revealed the purchases in its risk disclosures section, which detailed a host of potential pitfalls for holders of the cryptocurrency. It said:

We expect to begin accepting bitcoin as a form of payment for our products in the near future, subject to applicable laws and initially on a limited basis, which we may or may not liquidate upon receipt.

The prices of digital assets have been in the past and may continue to be highly volatile, including as a result of various associated risks and uncertainties. For example, the prevalence of such assets is a relatively recent trend, and their long-term adoption by investors, consumers and businesses is unpredictable. Moreover, their lack of a physical form, their reliance on technology for their creation, existence and transactional validation and their decentralization may subject their integrity to the threat of malicious attacks and technological obsolescence. Finally, the extent to which securities laws or other regulations apply or may apply in the future to such assets is unclear and may change in the future. If we hold digital assets and their values decrease relative to our purchase prices, our financial condition may be harmed.