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Private Seller Unloading Tesla Model Xs In China For $240,000

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Those in China interested in purchasing a Tesla Model X, but not being willing to wait until later this year (or longer) to take delivery, have apparently been paying as much as $240,000 on the so-called “grey market” for one, according to recent reports.

Tesla Model X Black Eye

It should remembered that the starting price for the Model X in the US is substantially lower — a new Model X P90D in the US starts at $115,000, while it starts at $170,000 in China (due to import duties, shipping, etc.).

That’s still a $70,000 markup at present, if the top-end models are indeed selling on the grey market for as much as $240,000. Presumably, the importers/sellers are quite happy with the slower Model X rollout in China.

A specific seller cited by Forbes has apparently been purchasing the vehicles in the US and then shipping them himself to China. Business has apparently been brisk, as Forbes quoted the seller as saying that all he has left in stock are white vehicles.

Given all of the downsides that accompany grey-market vehicle imports in China (despite being legal), it’s amazing that the seller is doing as well as he apparently is. To sum the situation in the country up to some degree: grey-market import vehicles in China have their warranties voided (dealers will perform repairs, but not for free); the in-vehicle displays will be in English and use American measurement units; and in-vehicle navigation won’t be functional (Google maps is blocked in China).

That doesn’t really sound like a great deal to me. Why not just wait a year or so? Is this nothing but impatient “must have now” rich-people behavior?

As Autoblog notes in its coverage, “this exact same situation occurred a few years ago with the Tesla Model S. It’s unknown what steps Tesla is taking to curb these sales, but expect the company to be working on a plan. While customers may be willing to pay the premium, the sales don’t count towards Tesla’s Chinese sales figures. Until the company figures something out, we’re sure that the grey market imports will continue and possibly expand.”

Black Tesla Model X photo by Kyle Field, for CleanTechnica

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Written By

James Ayre's background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy.


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