Tesla retail sales in China grow while exports remain steady in May 2023

Tesla China continues to impress in 2023 with a strong start to the year. New data for the month of May shows the automaker is continuing the trend with local deliveries growing both year-over-year (YoY) and month-over-month (MoM), while exports have remained steady.

As we reported last week Tesla China’s wholesale figures for May 2023 came in at 77,695 units. That figure included both Model 3 and Model Y cars built at Giga Shanghai that were sold to local customers in China, and those that were exported to other parts of the world, which for the first time included Canada.

The China Passenger Car Association (CPCA) has now released a breakdown of domestic sales and exports. According to the data Tesla sold 42,508 new cars in China last month. This was a massive 332% increase from the same month last year when Tesla delivered 9,825 cars in May 2022, a month that was significantly impacted by COVID related lockdowns at the time. It was also more than 6% more than the 39,956 cars Tesla sold in April 2023.

As for exports, Tesla China had an equally strong month with 35,187 new EVs loaded on to cargo ships at the various ports around Shanghai. This figure was 58% higher than May 2022, and only slightly down from April 2023. The drop was only 2% however, which actually shows a strong performance as the first month of a quarter (April) typically has the highest number of exports before dropping in the second (May) and third (June) months of the three-month period.

As we noted at the top of this article, Tesla China is off to a very strong start in 2023. Through the first five months the automaker has sold over 382,000 cars, of which nearly 200,000 have been domestic sales and over 182,000 have been exports. To put that number into perspective, at the same point last year Tesla China had 217,000 sales between January 2022 and May 2022.

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