The Chinese Ministry of Industry has recently added Tesla’s locally manufactured Model 3 to its approved subsidy list. This suggests that the sale of the models in China would soon start.
In concrete terms, Model 3 has now been included in the list of recommended electric vehicles for “New Energy Vehicle” subsidies. On a new Tesla twitter account for China, the company clarifies that this “is also a permit to sell and deliver China-made Model 3 to customers”.
At the same time, new aerial photographs of the Gigafactory 3 and the associated parking area show that production is apparently already extensive. Pictures taken by drones show 155 vehicles and shortly afterwards (according to unconfirmed information one day later) 270 cars.
Tesla is said to have started the production lines in Shanghai as early as mid-October. In the second quarter of the year, machines and systems were installed in the halls. By the end of the year, Tesla has set itself the target of producing 1,000 vehicles per week in the Gigafactory.
In August, the Chinese government had already included Tesla’s electric cars in the list of vehicles exempt from sales tax. Technically, only cars produced in China are exempt from the ten per cent sales tax. Thanks to the local factory in Shanghai, Tesla is now apparently also granted this privilege.
At the same time, Tesla has now passed the official mark of becoming the largest EV manufacturer in the world. They barely passed the previous leader, China’s BYD, with 807,954 electric vehicles as of October 2019, while BYD has delivered 787,150 vehicles to date. An important aspect to note here is also that BYD produces both hybrid and battery-electric vehicles, while Tesla exclusively manufactures emissions-free vehicles. Additionally, Tesla managed to catch up the distance as China’s impressive NEV New Energy Vehicle subsidies expired, and are preparing for a far more strict rollout of funding. This has prompted a series of shrunk bottom lines and several bankruptcies.
Meanwhile, Tesla is ramping up their sales plans for the Cybertruck. The electric pickup is to be available in three different versions (with 1-3 electric motors installed correspondingly) and will be available starting in late 2021. Initially, the two smaller versions were to be the only ones available at that time, with the 3-motor Cybertruck following a year later, but the reservation numbers, which were heavily tilted in favour of the 2 and 3 motor versions, made the Californian manufacturers reassess their plan. Now all three are to be expected in 2021.
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