Sales of Tesla’s China-made electric vehicles fell to their lowest level in five months, data from the China Passenger Car Association (CPCA) showed on Thursday.
The US automaker delivered 55,796 China-made EVs last month, marking a 44% drop from November.
Tesla’s December sales were also 21% lower than a year earlier as the EV-maker reduced output and cut prices to deal with rising inventories amid weakening demand.
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The December data also marks the fewest monthly deliveries for Tesla since July when most of its production at its Shanghai Gigafactory was suspended due to an upgrade of its production lines.
For the whole of 2022, the automobile giant delivered 50% more vehicles produced in the Shanghai plant compared with 2021, the CPCA data showed.
Globally, the Elon Musk-led automaker saw an increase of 40% in deliveries in 2022, missing its target of 50% annual growth.
Tesla suspended production at its Shanghai plant, its most productive manufacturing hub, from December 24 to January 2 amid a spike in Covid cases across China. The move was also part of the carmaker’s effort to reduce output.
Chinese rival BYD still led all brands in China’s December EV sales with 234,598 electric cars including plug-in hybrids and pure EVs. That was more than quadruple Tesla’s sales in the same month, the CPCA data showed.
SAIC-GM-Wuling Automobile Co, the joint venture of General Motors in China making small budget EVs, also outsold Tesla by 53%, according to the association.
- Reuters with additional editing by Vishakha Saxena
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