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Tesla China competitor BYD sells 552,076 NEVs in Q1 2023

Tesla Giga Shanghai’s main competitor in China, BYD, sold 552,076 new energy vehicles (NEVs) in the first quarter of 2023. BYD’s NEV sales are up 92.81% year-over-year, but down 19.22% compared to Q4 2022. 

In January 2023, BYD sold approximately 151,341 NEVS. While in February, the Chinese automaker sold precisely 193,655 new energy vehicles. And in the last month of the first quarter, BYD sold 207,080. 

The Chinese government considers plug-in electric vehicles, battery electric vehicles (BEVs), and plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEVs) as new energy vehicles. CnEVPost reported that BYD stopped producing and selling internal combustion engines in March 2022. Currently, the company focuses on making and selling plug-in hybrid and battery electric vehicles.  

The latest numbers show that BYD holds a large chunk of China’s NEV market. Based on China’s Passenger Car Association (CPCA) calculations, BYD holds roughly 28% of China’s market for battery electric vehicles alone—not accounting for its PHEV sales. 

Recent numbers revealed that Tesla captures about 8% of the total NEV market in China, selling only battery electric vehicles. The CPCA estimated that Tesla captured 11% of the NEV market, excluding PHEVs. The American automaker’s EV sales in China rose 43% yoy, partly attributed to the price cuts in January. 

Tesla delivered 422,000 cars in the first quarter and produced 440,000 BEVs. Given that Tesla only makes battery electric vehicles, it is quite impressive that there’s only a tiny sales gap between the American automaker and China’s biggest car manufacturer. 

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