Chinese automaker BYD (Build Your Dreams) has overtaken Elon Musk’s Tesla as the leading seller of electric cars.
BYD, which is backed by American billionaire investor Warren Buffett, sold a total of 641,350 electric vehicles and hybrids in the first half of 2022 while Tesla sold just 564,743 in the same time period.
In June alone, BYD sold over 100,000 electric cars. The Chinese automaker’s sales increased by 314 percent this year compared to last year.
The market for electric vehicles in China is much larger than in the US. In 2021, over 3.3 million electric cars were sold in China while just 608,000 were sold in the US.
This may be due, in part, to the fact that there are many low-cost electric cars available in China while most found in the US are more expensive.
The company “sold 134,036 new energy vehicles in June, with a YOY increase of 162.7%! First half of 2022 we delivered total sales exceeding 640,000 units…We are excited to be taking initiatives for building a greener future for all,” BYD wrote in a tweet.
#BYD sold 134,036 new energy vehicles in June, with a YOY increase of 162.7%!
First half of 2022 we delivered total sales exceeding 640,000 units
— BYD (@BYDCompany) July 3, 2022
Speaking to Bloomberg in 2011, Tesla CEO Musk dismissed the idea that BYD could compete with his company to Bloomberg: “Have you seen their car? I don’t think they have a great product. I don’t think it’s particularly attractive, the technology is not very strong.”
However, in May of this year, Musk stated that Chinese companies would pose competition to his electric vehicle company in the future. Tesla struggled due to factory shutdowns as a result of COVID-19 lockdowns in China this year, yet BYD was ample to ramp up production and sales during the same period.
Musk tells Tesla workers to come back to office
In June, Musk informed his workers that they should all return to the office and end remote work, according to a leaked memo.
All those who did not want to return to the office were asked to leave leave. “Anyone who wishes to do remote work must be in the office for a minimum (and I mean minimum) of 40 hours per week or depart Tesla,” the memo states.
“If you don’t show up, we will assume you have resigned…This is less than we ask of factory workers,” the memo states.
According to the memo, in the case that any worker could not meet the minimum of forty hours per week in the office, Musk himself would “review and approve” those he found legitimate. “If there are particularly exceptional contributors for whom this is impossible, I will review and approve those exceptions directly,” Musk wrote.