Bitcoin has surged to a record high after a major announcement of support from Tesla.

The electric car company said it had invested $1.5 million in the cryptocurrency and would start taking it as payment.

Bitcoin’s price surged almost 10 per cent immediately after Tesla’s announcement, taking it higher than ever before.

Tesla made the investment after it “updated its investment policy” so that it could put its cash into other assets, it said. That could include “certain specific alternative reserve assets”, it announced in a filing with the SEC.

“Thereafter, we invested an aggregate $1.50 billion in bitcoin under this policy,” it said in the same statement. “Moreover, 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.”