Tesla wants level playing field with Chinese automakers

China Automakers Don't Face Same Challenges US Companies Do, Alleges Tesla

  • Image Credit: Drew Phillips
If Tesla Motors chief Elon Musk has any influence with President Obama, now may be a good time to call in a favor. Obama is slated to meet with Chinese President Xi Jinxing in October. And the California electric-vehicle maker is hoping President Obama addresses what Tesla says are inequities between the US and Chinese automotive market, according to Hybrid Cars.

The primary issue is that US automakers are required to partner with China-based companies in order to sell vehicles in that country. Additionally, there are substantial import duties imposed by the Chinese government.

That means that it's a lot more expensive for a US automaker to do business in China than the other way around. And with Tesla trying to get a foothold in that rapidly growing market, the company is angling for what it says would be a more level playing field. Tesla representatives didn't immediately respond to a request for comment from AutoblogGreen about this issue.

Tesla has run into challenges selling its Model S in China. Late last year, then-Tesla China president Veronica Wu stepped down after less than a year on the job. Former Bentley China executive Kingston Chang also had a similarly short stint. Another issue is a lack of plug-in vehicle charging stations. To combat this, the number of Tesla Supercharger stations in China is on the rise. As of May, there were about a half-dozen Superchargers in or near Beijing and Shanghai. Tesla also indicated this summer that it would start selling its Model X all-electric SUV in China as soon as next summer.

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