Robin Ren, Global VP & Head of APAC for Tesla Motors, made a keynote speech titled “Speed up and Change the World with Tesla” on the first day of the the Global Mobile Internet Conference (GMIC) in Beijing Thursday.
Ren spoke about how Tesla would be unable to realize its ambitious plans without China, and said that Tesla will continue to scale-up business in the country.
Tesla unveiled the new Model 3 electric car on March 31. Customers who have already ordered the vehicle will receive the cars in the the second half of 2017. Ren said they have received 400,000 orders globally as of now — less than 30 days after its launch. China is the second largest market for the Model 3, not far behind the United States.
Ren believes the USD 35,000 Model 3 is in the affordable price-range for many Chinese customers and said they are producing the car on a massive scale.
One of the highlights of Ren’s appearance was his participation in showcasing Tesla’s Model X in GMIC’s exhibition hall. He said the Model X will be very popular with Chinese customers because of its unique design.
The Model X is designed to comfortably seat seven people in three rows, with the second-row seats having independent reclining capability, more legroom, under seat storage and access to the third row. The third row seats fold flat when not in use and the second row seats lean forward and can be moved out of the way in order to create a large cargo area.
Both the Model X and Model S feature a Medical grade HEPA air filtration system, which testing says can remove at least 99.97% of particulate exhaust pollution and allergens, bacteria and other contaminants from the car’s cabin air. A “bioweapon defense mode” also creates positive air pressure inside the car’s cabin to protect occupants.
Ren said this feature will be very attractive to Chinese customers.
China’s government is actively boosting the new energy vehicle industry by providing subsidies and tax breaks for manufacturers, as well as instituting driving restrictions on gas-powered vehicles. Ren said China represents a very favorable environment for Tesla to expand its business quickly.
Over just the last two years, Tesla opened 17 stores in seven major cities in China, and built 372 super charging spots and 1,200 destination charging spots all over the country.
Ren said they will continuously invest in China’s EV market and help China develop the new energy vehicle sector. China has been a strong force in helping drive Tesla’s development. Without China, Tesla would not be able to fully realize its global vision in the EV sector, he said.
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