Tesla started off the year in China with some substantial price cuts, and they appear to have stoked strong demand. The Model Y, which saw its prices drop as much as 13% in January, was the country’s best selling SUV in March, and the second best selling SUV overall in the first quarter of 2023.
According to new data from the China Passenger Car Association (CPCA), Tesla sold a total of 54,937 Model Ys across the country in March. That is a 38% increase from March 2022 when 39,730 units were sold, and also a 115% increase from February which saw 25,526 sales. Due to Giga Shanghai’s production cycles Tesla typically sells more vehicles domestically towards the end of a quarter, so it is not surprising to see the big jump in sales from February to March.
The strong performance in March was enough to make it the best selling SUV for the month, electric or otherwise, outpacing the second place BYD Song, a plug-in hybrid (PHEV), which sold 40,114 units during the same time period. (via CNEvPost)
It was not enough however to make it the best selling SUV in the first quarter. From January to March Tesla sold 94,647 Model Ys in China, while the BYD Song accumulated 141,415 sales. The Model Y was far ahead of the third placed BYD Yuan Plus (62,528).
Tesla China has had a very strong start to the year, kicking off with 66,051 Model 3 and Model Y sales of vehicles built at Giga Shanghai in January. This figure wasn’t near a record, but it was significant considering it was a month shortened due to the Chinese Lunar New Year holidays. That was followed up by another 74,402 sales in February, which was also a shortened month with just 28 days. Production was also impacted however due to a Model 3 production line shutdown for upgrades.
Then in March data from the CPCA showed a near record month with 88,869, the automaker’s second best result ever, only behind the record of 100,291 units that were sold in November 2022. That brought Tesla China’s quarterly total to nearly 229,322 units, more than half of the automaker’s global total for the first three months of the year.