With over 1.3 billion people and much of the world’s manufacturing and economic power, China holds incredible buying power and a nigh-insatiable lust for luxury goods. For high-end car makers like Tesla Motors though, selling products in China is both a risky and worthwhile endeavor, and it seems like Tesla already has pent-up demand for its electric sedan.
Taking Tesla Motors to China certainly is a good way to make money, and the company claims to already have hundreds of pre-orders in Hong Kong, and is expected to open a massive dealership (three times the largest U.S. dealership) in Beijing soon. Companies like Audi, BMW, and Mercedes are experiencing unprecedented growth as China’s elite gobble up luxury goods like they’re going out of style.
But the market for electric vehicles in China is hilariously small, with just 3,000 pure-electric cars being sold in the first three quarters of 2012. Without a Chinese business partner, Tesla also won’t qualify for generous Chinese EV subsidies and tax breaks, and high tariffs will push the price of the already-costly Tesla through the roof. When all is said and done, the price of the Tesla Model S in China could potentially double.
If the popularity of the Tesla Model S in America is any indication of how it will go over in China though, Elon Musk has nothing to worry about, because the people who can afford it will want it, no matter the cost.
Source: Green Car Reports