Tesla owns and operates more than 200 stores nationwide that display models and arrange test drives for potential buyers. The EV maker recently slashed prices on its Model 3 and Model Y in China.
Electric car giant Tesla has closed its flagship showroom in China, a move described as aimed at reducing retail costs in its second-largest market.
Tesla confirmed the closing of the showroom at its Parkview Green luxury shopping mall in Beijing to Reuters on Wednesday. It said it has moved the store to another mall called Raffles City. That showroom opened in mid-October and is smaller than the original two-story showroom in Parkview Green.
Two people with knowledge of the matter previously said Tesla closed its Parkview Green showroom last weekend. The store, which opened in 2013, was Tesla’s first in China and was renovated and expanded in 2018.
A mall employee confirmed to Reuters during a visit to the site on Wednesday that Tesla has closed the showroom, where the windows are now plastered with posters of the next tenant, a fashion brand. BAPE street page.
“Their contract with us has expired and Tesla decided not to renew,” said the mall employee.
A call to the store earlier in the day was redirected to the Raffles City showroom.
Tesla owns and operates more than 200 stores nationwide that display models and arrange test drives for potential buyers.
Reuters reported in September that Tesla was considering closing some showrooms in flashy shopping malls in cities like Beijing after traffic dropped during COVID restrictions.
It also plans to focus more on stores in lower-cost suburban locations where repairs can also be made as the company works to meet CEO Elon Musk’s goal of improving improve service to customers.
As part of that effort, Tesla has hired technicians and other employees for service jobs in China. The company’s China recruitment website showed 305 service job vacancies as of Wednesday, little changed from September.
More than half of Tesla’s China stores do not offer repair or maintenance services and are in high-rent locations where space is limited. That includes the now-closed Parkview Green Tesla store.
Tesla owns all of its own stores instead of depending on dealers. It also sells its cars online. That allowed it to take longer to adjust to its original retail strategy modeled after Apple’s sleek stores in high-rent locations.
Tesla has reduced the starting price for Model 3 and Model Y vehicles rose as much as 9% in China, reversing an industry-wide upward trend amid dwindling demand in the world’s largest auto market.
Tesla sold 318,151 vehicles in China in the first nine months of 2022, up 55 percent from a year earlier, according to the China Tourist Vehicle Association. Meanwhile, total sales of electric and hybrid vehicles increased by 113.2 percent.
Date of first publication: November 3, 2022, 07:22 AM IST