Elon Musk wanted to sell Tesla Inc. cars in India as early as 2019. Three years later, the American electric vehicle pioneer isn’t really much closer.
“We are still dealing with a lot of government challenges,” Musk said in a Twitter post early Thursday in Asia, in response to a user who had asked if there was an update on Tesla’s launch in the South Asian country. .
Tesla CEO Musk and the government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi have been in talks for years, but disagreements over a local factory and the country’s 100% import duties have led to a deadlock. The government has asked the EV maker to ramp up local sourcing and share detailed production plans; Musk has demanded lower taxes so Tesla can start selling imported vehicles at a lower price in a budget-conscious market.
Still dealing with many challenges with government
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 12, 2022
In October, an Indian minister said he had asked Tesla to avoid selling Chinese-made cars in the country, urging the automaker to manufacture, sell and export vehicles from a local factory. India, with a population comparable to China, is a promising market for EV manufacturers, but the country’s roads are still dominated by cheap, basic cars made by Suzuki Motor Corp’s local units. and Hyundai Motor Co.
Tesla will also face competition from other foreign players, including Mercedes-Benz, which announced on Wednesday that it will roll out a locally assembled EQS – the electric version of its flagship S-Class sedan – in India by the fourth quarter.
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