‘Next year for sure’: Tesla CEO Elon Musk suggests India entry in 2021

Tesla

  • Tesla’s entry could come at a time when Modi govt has increasingly been focusing on promoting the use and manufacture of electric vehicles
  • India will be the next automatic frontier for Tesla after it started rolling out cars from its factory in China, world’s largest car market
New Delhi: Tesla Inc chief executive Elon Musk indicated on Friday that the US electric carmaker will make a foray into Indian market in 2021.

“Next year for sure,” Musk said on Twitter in reply to a post with a photograph of a T-shirt with the message: “India wants Tesla”.

“Thanks for waiting,” Musk said. He was replying to a tweet from a Twitter handle called Tesla India Club, which told the billionaire, “Hey Elon , just thought we’d put this out here. We wait and hang on to hope wrt “hopefully soon” for India Tesla entry. Would love to hear of any progress in this regard.”

Tesla’s entry could come at a time when Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government has increasingly become focussed on promoting the use and manufacture of electric vehicles.

India’s auto sector, already reeling from a slowdown in demand last year, has been further hit by the novel coronavirus pandemic and carmakers are seeking government support to push sales.

Musk commented last year about coming to India, in response to someone on Twitter who asked “What about India sir?”.

“Would love to be there this year. If not, definitely next!” he said in March 2019.

India will be the next automatic frontier for Tesla after its Chinese foray.

Recently, the US electric car maker had cut the starting price of its Chinese-made Model 3 sedans by about 8% to 249,900 yuan ($36,805), once Chinese subsidies for electric vehicles are taken into account, according to its China website.

Previously, the starting price for Model 3 sedans made in Tesla’s Shanghai factory with a standard driving range was 271,550 yuan, after state purchase subsidies.

Tesla started to deliver cars from the Shanghai factory in December, helping it save on shipping costs and tariffs for imported models.

Tesla sold more than 11,000 vehicles, mostly Model 3s, in August in China, the world’s biggest car market.

It is also building new car manufacturing capacity for Model Y sports-utility vehicles in Shanghai and expects to start delivering them from next year.

Tesla shares rose as much as 495% this year. The rally ballooned its market value to nearly $400 billion, making it one of the largest companies listed on a U.S. exchange. Its dominance in the stock market has helped fuel the tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 nearly 30% higher year-to-date, besting the S&P 500’s 4% gain in 2020. It’s been a gut-wrenching run: the shares have swung an average of 4.4% a day in 2020, compared to 1.5% for the S&P 500, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

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