Elon Musk said that it’s now “impossible” to take Tesla private – even though doing so could lead to more innovation at the electric car maker.

Tesla’s share price is nearly eight times higher than it was at the start of the year, and it entered the S&P 500 as its fifth-largest member on December 21.

Musk, responding to comments from YouTuber Dave Lee on Twitter, said Friday that “engineering, design & general company operations” were a “fundamental limitation” to spending more time on innovation.

“Tesla public company duties are a much bigger factor, but going private is impossible now (sigh),” he tweeted.

The term “going private” refers to converting a publicly traded company into a private entity through, for example, a private-equity buyout.

Tesla’s market cap of more than $600 billion would make it the biggest acquisition of all time.

In August 2018, Musk said he wanted to take Tesla private, in comments that got him in trouble with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

“Am considering taking Tesla private at $420. Funding secured,” Musk tweeted at the time. The SEC argued Musk did not have a solid deal in place, and that he therefore made the statement knowing or having reason to know that it was “false and misleading.”

He was forced to step down as Tesla’s chairman.

Source: Yahoo Finance