Tesla starts the year 2023 with slight growth of Made-in-China (MIC) Model 3/Model Y electric car sales in China.
The overall wholesale vehicle shipments in China (local sales and export) - according to the China Passenger Car Association (CPCA)'s data - amounted to 66,051 units, which is over 10 percent more than a year ago.
* CPCA reports wholesale shipments, not registrations/customer deliveries.
Not only that, the result is 18 percent better than in December (when sales significantly decreased), despite the Chinese New Year holiday period.
Those are pretty good numbers, compared to the wave of decreased sales of electric cars noted by many electric vehicle start-ups in China in January.
It seems to us that the significant price cuts announced in early January really boosted sales. It initially shocked some customers, but later the number of new orders surged, according to media reports (including 30,000 orders in three days). Tesla CEO Elon Musk said that "price really matters" during the Tesla Q4 and full-year 2022 financial results and Q&A webcast.
According to Reuters (unofficial source), the number of orders is high enough that Tesla plans to produce nearly 20,000 MIC cars per week at the Giga Shanghai plant - that's roughly 80,000 per month, which is close to a record rate.
For reference, in 12 months of 2022, Tesla's total wholesale shipments of the Made-in-China (MIC) Tesla Model 3/Model Y reached 710,865 (up 50 percent year-over-year), including over 227,000 in Q4 (up 28 percent year-over-year).
The cumulative wholesale shipments from the Tesla Giga Shanghai plant are estimated at almost 1.4 million units (since January 2020) and the current plant capacity is potentially above one million units per year.
More detailed sales data - including separate numbers for local retail sales and export, as well as sales of individual MIC models, are not yet available. Below, we will present only the charts up to December 2022.
Sales in China
Tesla MIC retail sales in China are usually the highest in the final month of a quarter (the first half of a quarter is usually focused on export).
Tesla usually exports the highest number of cars in the first month of a quarter, and then a substantial number of cars also in the second month of a quarter.
Tesla produces in Shanghai two MIC models - Model 3 and Model Y (both in various versions).