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Tesla Motors Going to China, Gamble or Sure Bet?

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China's First Tesla Motors Store Opens Here This Year
China’s First Tesla Motors Store Opens Here This Year

Tesla Motors is already showing great success here in the United States, and has just started making deliveries in the European Union. Does Tesla Motors have a future in China?

China is currently the world’s fastest-growing economy, and has a number of things going for it that could make it the perfect market for the luxury electric vehicles being produced by Tesla Motors. First, the demand for luxury cars is high and imports are seen as extremely desirable. Second, China’s air-quality problems are the stuff of legend, killing hundreds of elderly and babies every year, which make electric vehicles that much more desirable.

Tesla Motors plans for a Chinese automobile market are still a bit of a “wild card,” according to CEO Elon Musk, and we’re waiting for more news on this in the coming months. Still, media and automobile market experts in China have shed some light on developments already in progress. For example, Tesla Motors already has Tesla Service Centers in China to maintain the Tesla Roadster and Model S that have already been imported to the country. Later this year, in the Beijing Parkview Green Mall, Tesla Motors will open its first Chinese Tesla Store, an 8,000ft2 showroom about 3x bigger than any US or EU Tesla Store.

Tesla Motors will sell successfully in China because it is a very high quality and well engineered automobile, a luxury brand and it is foreign made,” says Charlie Paglee, CEO of Brannan Auto Engineering in Shanghai, “Chinese customers will buy the Tesla to show off their wealth and demonstrate their love of the environment. Tesla will be successful in China because they have already become a status symbol in the USA and that standing will translate to China, similar to the prestige of owning an iPhone.”

On the other hand, Tesla Motors‘ move to China could be problematic, when you consider that China is the home of some of the best copycat technology on the planet. Where else can you find the Goophone i5S iPhone or AirBook MacBook Air knockoffs? If Tesla Motors moves to China, might the next knockoff be the Telsa Model eS?

Image © Zhou Ruogu Architecture Photography

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