Tesla (TSLA) deliveries ‘drop’ in China and media are making up reasons why

The media is reporting Tesla’s deliveries had a significant drop month-to-month in China, and theyare trying to link it to bad press the company had in the country over the last few months.

That’s not accurate.

There are currently a lot of headlines about “Tesla’s sales in China dropping.”

Most of the articles are based on a report by China’s Global Times, a media publication control by the government, which reported that “Embattled Tesla sees sales drop 27% in April from March in China market.”

They claimed that Tesla sales went down by 27% in April from March, and they linked it to Tesla receiving bad press in China recently:

“Tesla’s sales in China’s mainland market dropped by more than 27 percent in April from  March, after the world’s leading EV company was embroiled in a product quality spat in the market, following the protest of several Tesla users at the site of a recent Shanghai car expo.”

Then they explain some of the bad press, with the main example being the protest at Tesla’s booth at the Shanghai Motor Show.

A lot US and international media based their reporting on this report from Global Times, which is extremely flawed.

When you look at the details, Tesla’s sales didn’t “drop” by 27% month-to-month.

Tesla’s deliveries in China dropped from 35,478 cars in March to 25,845 cars in April, and the reason behind this drop is not bad press.

Over the last year, Tesla started allocating some production capacity at Gigafactory Shanghai, which supplies Tesla vehicles for the Chinese market, to other international markets.

In April, the automaker ended up exporting 14,174 cars from China in April.

Furthermore, Tesla had to temporarily shutdown production of Model Y in China in April due to supply chain issues.

Tesla’s stock is now dropping, and media are linking the drop to the report of “sales” dropping in China.

Electrek‘s take

Look, Tesla’s bad press in China may or may not have affected sales, but the stats in April don’t show that, and the media cannot claim that they do.

The truth is that we don’t know.

But what we know is that Tesla’s production allocation in April has been spoken for for a while.

Both for sales in China and for the vehicles that they needed to ship to other markets.

It’s way too soon to tell if the bad press had any impact on Tesla’s sales in China.

I don’t know if the Global Times, which again is basically state media, had bad intentions with this report or like many media, it likes to think that it has an impact so it was just too quick to link the deliveries to its press coverage.

As for the other media all just repeating the Global Times‘s angle, that’s just laziness.

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