Warren Buffett-backed Chinese automaker BYD dethrones Tesla as No. 1 in new electric vehicle sales

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Chinese automaker BYD dethroned Tesla as the leader in global new electric vehicle (NEV) sales in the first six months of this year.

The Shenzhen-based company sold over 640,000 vehicles from January through June, while Tesla sold 564,000.

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BYD also appears to be growing at a faster rate than its American competitor, selling 486,771 more cars than it did in the first half of 2021, showing a 315% bump in sales.

Tesla, on the other hand, sold 178,693 more vehicles in the first half of 2022 than of 2021, representing only a 46% increase.

The numbers alone do not tell the full story, however. While Tesla exclusively sells fully electric cars, BYD’s car sales include their plug-in hybrids that use gasoline engines to supplement their battery power. China still counts these hybrid types as “zero-emission.”

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Tesla has blamed its sales performance on supply chain issues due to COVID-19, with industry experts estimating a company loss of 50,000 to 70,000 units in production during the two-month Shanghai lockdown alone.

Citi analysts noted in May that BYD was largely unaffected by the lockdowns due to the fact that its supply chain is “vertically integrated,” meaning it produces many of its parts in-house, making it less dependent on outside suppliers.

Billionaire Warren Buffet’s company, Berkshire Hathaway, was an early investor in BYD, pouring $232 million into the company in 2008.

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The Chinese automaker is now worth an impressive $7.7 billion.


Featured Image via Fully Charged Show