BYD almost overtook Tesla in global EV sales

Tesla is still the name that has the most recall when one says electric car. That may change soon as BYD closes the gap to Tesla in numbers worldwide. 

CNN reports that the Chinese brand closed the final quarter of 2023 with 525,409 battery electric vehicles (BEV) while Tesla ended with 484,507 in the same period. Overall though, Tesla had the upper hand as it moved 1.8 million electric cars while BYD is only at 1.57 million for BEVs. If we include the 1.44 million hybrid cars that BYD sold, there’s no doubt the Chinese marquee is bigger than Tesla. 

Still, it seems BYD is on a slipstream behind Tesla in the BEV battle as the previous gap of 400,000 units in 2022 dwindled to 230,000 units in 2023. With both brands reporting growth over their previous year, it seems they’re defying the industry trend of slowing sales in the electric car market. 

There’s been a pause on the hype of electric vehicles after major manufacturers stepped on the brakes of their planned EV production upgrade. Ford announced the postponement of a $12 billion EV factory, GM abandoned the goal of building 400k EVs in North America, and Volkswagen also stopped their $2 billion planned EV factory in Germany. The story is not the same for BYD. 

BYD Philippines has switched distributors last year, the reigns now with AC Motors, and has quickly updated their lineup of BEVs. They’ve even brought in the long promised Atto 3 that’s priced near Japanese hybrids. 

They’re also awaiting for a crucial expansion in Europe. They just announced their plans to build a factory in Hungary last month which can only mean more sales for the brand in the region. This comes after they already established 230 stores across 19 countries and scored five star ratings in the Euro-NCAP.

With the rate things are going, it’s a matter of time before BYD can truly overtake Tesla in the EV game. The only question is can they make a more affordable EV to take that crown faster? 

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