China’s BYD surpasses Tesla to become the world’s largest electric car maker
China’s BYD has overtaken Tesla to become the largest maker of pure-electric vehicles. In the last quarter of 2023, BYD surpassed Tesla to claim the top spot as the world’s largest electric car company. The Chinese electric car manufacturer experienced a 22% increase in global deliveries in the fourth quarter, outperforming Tesla by approximately 41,000 electric vehicles (EVs).
In addition, BYD also sold more electric cars than Tesla during the last three months of last year. According to a report from CNN, BYD achieved a record-breaking year in 2023, selling a total of 525,409 battery electric vehicles (BEVs) in the three months leading up to December 31, while Tesla delivered a record 484,507 during the same period.
The surge in sales was attributed to the growing demand for EVs in China and the competitive discounts offered to domestic buyers, as noted by an analyst.
Although BYD took the lead in the final quarter, Tesla, under Elon Musk’s leadership, still maintained its overall dominance for the entire year. Tesla reported sales of 1.8 million electric cars, surpassing BYD’s total of 1.57 million electric vehicles, which marked a remarkable 73% increase from the previous year. Additionally, BYD sold 1.44 million hybrid vehicles.
The Shenzhen, China-based electric carmaker, backed by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, delivered a record-breaking 526,409 all-electric vehicles between October and December, a 22% rise from the previous quarter’s 431,603 units, where it narrowly missed surpassing Tesla’s 435,059 units.
Gao Shen, an independent analyst in Shanghai, emphasized that BYD’s success was fueled by the growing demand for EVs in China and the attractive discounts offered to domestic buyers. Achieving the status of the world’s largest pure-electric car manufacturer is expected to enhance BYD’s global reputation as a leading player in revolutionizing the automotive industry.
“BYD’s sales benefited from a rising demand for EVs in China and the discounts it offered to domestic car buyers. The new title as the world’s largest pure-electric car builder will hone its image as a global leading player in transforming the automotive industry,” Shen said.
Meanwhile, China has set an ambitious target for at least 20% of new cars sold annually in the country by 2025 to be new energy vehicles (NEVs), encompassing battery electric vehicles (BEVs), plug-in hybrids, and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles. The government aims for NEVs to become the “mainstream” of new car sales by 2035.
Surprisingly, the initial target was achieved in 2022, roughly three years ahead of schedule. There’s optimism that the second target might also be reached earlier than anticipated. Data released last month by the China Association of Auto Manufacturers revealed that in the first 11 months of 2023, 8.3 million units of new energy vehicles were sold, constituting more than 30% of the total car sales.
BYD first made its foray into the automotive sector in 2003 by acquiring the Nanjing-based automaker Qin Chuan. This strategic move allowed BYD to gain access to a car manufacturing permit.
Founded in 1995 as “Build Your Dreams” (BYD), this influential Chinese conglomerate has gained prominence for its extensive portfolio across diverse industries. Beginning with a focus on rechargeable batteries, BYD swiftly rose to become a world leader in electric vehicle battery technology.
Today, the company’s pursuits have diversified to encompass electric vehicles, conventional automobiles, solar power solutions, and electronic components. BYD’s resolute dedication to sustainability and forward-looking innovation positions it as a trailblazer in the electric mobility domain, aiming not only to transform transportation but also to tackle environmental issues head-on.