If you live in China, it seems there's really no catch here. And, hopefully, people in other parts of the world will be able to enjoy a zero-down Tesla lease or financing plan in the future as well.
According to a recent report by Electrek, Tesla just initiated something called "financial leasing" in China. Essentially, it lets new Tesla buyers get into a car without having to put any money down. More importantly, it gives lessees/buyers greater flexibility at the time of purchase/lease.
The publication came across the Tesla China website update over the weekend. Upon entering the online configurator for Tesla's website in China, you can check out the new financing plans. Under "Financial Services," there are three choices at the top: cash, Cooperative Financial Institution Loans, and Tesla Financial Leasing. The latter is the new program.
Electrek provided the following information about the program, which comes directly from the Tesla China website, though the publication translated it into English:
“Purchase a car through Tesla’s official financial leasing (a joint service with Chuangfu Financial Leasing). After paying a certain down payment, monthly installments are paid and the right to use the vehicle is obtained. After the lease expires, the residual value is paid and the vehicle ownership is obtained.”
Much like many lease or financing offers available in the US, the buyer gets to choose the down payment and the term. The down payment is selected based on a percentage, which ranges from 0 percent to 50 percent. The available terms range from 12 to 60 months.
Tesla is currently raising prices on a regular basis in the US. While it's important for the company to try to make it cheaper and easier to get into an electric car, demand is so high it can't fill orders. Some owners ordering a Tesla on our shores today may not have the car until September 2022. Nonetheless, Tesla's Chief Financial Officer Zack Kirkhorn has made it clear that Tesla will do everything in its power to make its cars more affordable.
Now that Tesla has had many quarters of success, not only with production and delivery records, but also related to its financial situation, it may be in a better position to offer more appealing terms for buyers across the globe. Though this doesn't necessarily mean Tesla will lower prices, it does mean that the company can potentially lower interest rates, increase the length of the term, and offer low or no down payment options. This is all in addition to various incentives, overall saving compared to comparable gas cars, Tesla's in-house insurance plans, and more.
Do you think Tesla will launch something similar to this plan in other markets? Are people more concerned about the bottom line when it comes to a new car, or the interest rate, down payment, monthly payment, etc? Start a conversation about this topic in the comment section below.