Elon Musk

Elon Musk rockets past Jeff Bezos to become the richest man in the world

PHOTO: Elon Musk

Forget ‘who wants to be a millionaire?’ If you want to be up among the richest people in the world, it’s going to take billions.

Just ask Elon Musk, who yesterday leapfrogged Amazon founder Jeff Bezos to become the richest man on the planet.

On Wednesday, the 49-year-old South Africa-born engineer’s fortune stood at $181 billion (£133 billion) and Bezos’s at $184 billion (£136 billion).

But thanks to a surge in the share price of his electric car company Tesla, his fortune — which goes up by tens of millions every day — had risen yesterday to $188.5 billion (£139 billion).

Bezos, 56, had held the top spot since October 2017, when he overtook Microsoft founder Bill Gates, 65, who has a net worth of $119.3 billion (£88 billion).

The trio, who all made their billions from technology, form a very exclusive club of tycoons to have held the title of the world’s richest man, jostling for first, second and third position as stock prices and fortunes have wavered.

And from a love of private jets and fancy houses, through to costly divorces, that’s not all these moneybags have in common.

But while Musk may currently be the richest, who is the flashest? Who still drives a seven-year-old Honda, who can’t boast of an art collection, and who has sworn off space travel?

Elon Musk

Jeff Bezos

Elon Musk has officially become the world’s richest person after a surge in Tesla shares increased his net worth to a whopping $188.5billion, dethroning Amazon’s Jeff Bezos 

Musk: He is careful to be seen driving his own electric vehicles, with an £80,000 Model S Tesla his car of choice. He was seen recently driving the prototype of his new £40,000 Cybertruck. The man who wants people to drive greener cars also keeps a gas guzzling 1967 Jaguar E-Type worth £60,000 and owns two private jets — a Gulfstream G550, which costs £45 million and a £48 million Gulfstream G650.

Bezos: The Amazon boss is no petrolhead. The last time he was asked about his car, he revealed he drove a seven-year-old Honda Accord. He scores some billionaire points with his £48 million private jet, an eight-seater Gulfstream G650ER, and the £3.5 million hanger he bought to keep it in.

Gates: The climate-change activist recently bought a £116,000 Porsche Taycan Turbo (but at least it’s electric). He also has a £100,000 Ferrari 348 and a £60,000 Jaguar XJ6. He describes his jet — a £29 million, 19-seater Bombardier BD-700 — as his ‘guilty pleasure’.