Business Maverick

Business Maverick

Tesla China Exports Slump to Just 60 Cars on Strong Local Demand

Tesla China Exports Slump to Just 60 Cars on Strong Local Demand
Tesla Inc. Model 3 electric vehicles in a parking lot near one of the automaker's dealership in Shanghai, China, on Saturday, July 3, 2021. After receiving red-carpet treatment from government officials, who granted Tesla the unprecedented concession of allowing it to wholly control its local subsidiary, the carmaker is now being forced to rethink its strategy, from customer service to public relations, in a market that's key to Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk's long-term ambitions. Photographer: Qilai Shen/Bloomberg

Tesla Inc. exported just 60 cars produced at its Shanghai factory in March, a record low as strong domestic demand sucked up most of the output, according to China Passenger Car Association data released on Monday.

The U.S.-based maker of EVs shipped a total of 65,814 cars from its factory in China’s financial hub last month, with the bulk of those — 65,754 — going to the domestic market.

The total number of EVs produced and delivered locally by Tesla in China in March was the highest since December, despite a six-day plant shutdown caused by production snarls and pandemic-related disruptions. April figures will be closely watched considering the Covid-19 lockdown in Shanghai has seen Tesla suspend production there since March 28.

Read more: Tesla Halted, Chips Pile Up as Shanghai Lockdown Upends Business

Tesla didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment on its March output.

Overall passenger vehicle sales in China slid 10.9% year-on-year in March to 1.61 million units, the PCA data show. Month-on-month, sales rose 25.3%. New-energy vehicle deliveries in China jumped 137.6% year-on-year to 445,000 units.

“Despite the global lithium price hike and chip shortage, China’s local OEMs achieved a great performance with their strong capability and government coordination,” Cui Dongshu, secretary general of the trade body, said. He said China’s share of the global autos market reached a record 36% in the first two months of the year.

Also benefiting from robust local demand was China’s BYD Co., which delivered 104,338 new-energy vehicles. NEVs include EVs and plug-in hybrids.

China’s legacy carmakers are under growing pressure to crank out ever-larger volumes of electric vehicles as missing their NEV production targets could dent their profitability, Bloomberg Intelligence analysts wrote earlier this month. BM


Comments - Please in order to comment.

Please peer review 3 community comments before your comment can be posted

A South African Hero: You

There’s a 99.8% chance that this isn’t for you. Only 0.2% of our readers have responded to this call for action.

Those 0.2% of our readers are our hidden heroes, who are fuelling our work and impacting the lives of every South African in doing so. They’re the people who contribute to keep Daily Maverick free for all, including you.

The equation is quite simple: the more members we have, the more reporting and investigations we can do, and the greater the impact on the country.

Be part of that 0.2%. Be a Maverick. Be a Maverick Insider.

Support Daily Maverick→
Payment options