[NEWS] BYD Outpaces Tesla in Production, Securing the Crown in EV Sector

2023-10-04 Emerging Technologies editor

Source to China Times, despite the intense price wars engulfing the Chinese automotive market, domestic electric vehicle leader BYD is continuing to gain ground. In the third quarter of this year, BYD’s production volumes surpassed Tesla’s, making it the global leader in electric vehicle production. In terms of sales, BYD sold a total of 431,600 pure electric vehicles in the first three quarters of the year, just slightly behind Tesla, bringing it closer to the top spot in global electric vehicle sales.

According to reports from Chinese media on the 3rd of this month, BYD recently released its latest production and sales data. In September of this year, BYD produced approximately 280,000 new energy vehicles, representing a 36.6% increase compared to the same period last year.

TrendForce’s recent research showed that BYD surpassed Ford to become the fourth-largest global car brand in terms of car sales for August. Despite the weakening demand in the domestic car market, BYD was not significantly affected as all of its offerings are new energy vehicles. BYD saw a 5% increase in car sales compared with July and was just 0.1 percentage point behind Honda in market share, which held the third position.

It’s important to note that the term “new energy vehicles” in China includes plug-in hybrid vehicles and fully battery-electric vehicles. Regarding pure electric vehicles, BYD produced around 144,000 units in September, marking a 71% year-on-year increase. In the third quarter, BYD produced approximately 440,000 pure electric vehicles, which is a 67% increase compared to the previous year, establishing it as the largest manufacturer and seller of pure electric vehicles in China.

In contrast, Tesla, which exclusively produces pure electric vehicles, manufactured approximately 430,500 units in the third quarter of this year, marking an 18% year-on-year increase. Data indicates that in terms of production for that quarter, BYD has secured the title of the world’s largest electric vehicle manufacturer.

In terms of sales, BYD achieved a new record with 822,100 units of new energy vehicles sold in the third quarter of this year.

Specifically, BYD sold around 431,600 pure electric vehicles, representing a 23% increase from the second quarter, with 151,200 units sold in September, marking a 59% year-on-year increase. Tesla delivered 435,100 units in the third quarter, a decrease of more than 31,000 units compared to the previous quarter, marking its first decline since the second quarter of last year.

This narrows the gap between Tesla and BYD to 3,456 units, the closest it has been in their ongoing competition. Analysts point out that over the past year, BYD has aggressively expanded into new overseas markets such as Southeast Asia, Japan, the Middle East, Europe, and Latin America, leading to a continuous increase in deliveries. In contrast, Tesla faced production line adjustments and factory shutdowns, resulting in its first-quarter decline in deliveries in over a year, further closing the sales gap.

In recent years, with the Chinese government’s support and encouragement of car purchases, China has become the world’s largest market for pure electric vehicles, accounting for about 33% of global sales, and the market demand remains strong. Given BYD’s competitive advantage in the Chinese market, surpassing Tesla in both production and sales is not an impossible feat.

On the other hand, Tesla, despite initiating a price war successfully earlier this year in China, sacrificed its previously leading profit margins and now faces fierce competition not only from BYD but also from other peers like NIO in an increasingly competitive market. Even in its home market in the United States, Tesla must contend with competition from established automakers such as Ford, General Motors, Hyundai, and Volkswagen.