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Tesla forecasts ‘notably lower’ EV sales as Musk-run firm warns on China threat

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Tesla said it expects electric vehicle (EV) sales growth to come in “notably lower” this year despite its aggressive cost cutting strategy, amid a slowdown in demand.

Elon Musk’s outfit said it was between “between two major growth waves,” but company shares fell by nearly six per cent in New York following the announcement.

It comes as the electric automaker struggles to keep up with fierce competition from Chinese rivals such as BYD, who are offering cut throat prices for EVs.

Tesla has been slashing prices in a bid to keep up but Musk warned that its Chinese compeition would “pretty much demolish most other car companies in the world” should trade barriers not be introduced.

The firm, which has its headquarters in Austin, Texas, actually sold a record 1.8m cars last year, an increase of almost 40 per cent on 2022.

However, revenue growth slowed to an increase of 3 per cent, while gross margins for the three months to the end of December shrunk.

The battle between Tesla and its Chinese rivals falls amid fears of a slowdown in the move to electric vehicles (EVs).

The Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) has halved its forecast for UK electric vehicle sales in the coming years as higher interest rates dampen demand.

In Europe last year, EV sales rose 28 per cent, but fell by nearly a quarter in December amid a dip in registrations for battery-powered cars.

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