Tesla’s 1st Deliveries Of Made-In-China Model Y, & Hot Market Potential

By Johnna Crider & Zach Shahan

Tesla has started delivering its made-in-China (MIC) Model Y crossover in China. Tesla tweeted yesterday that Model Y deliveries in China had officially begun and included some pictures.

How big of a deal is this? Big. As we recently reported, out of Tesla’s ~500,000 global sales in 2020, ~148,000 were in China, with that market only trailing the USA (~204,000).

In the 4th quarter, it was even closer, with ~70,000 Tesla sales in the USA and ~60,000 in China.

This was with the Model Y only being delivered in North America. In fact, China was the top market for the Model 3 in the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th quarter — and the year as a whole. What does that mean for the Model Y? We don’t know yet, but we can certainly expect it will get a lot of sales.

Without a doubt, Gigafactory 2 has been a blazing success, one of Tesla’s biggest success stories in recent years — and that’s saying a lot. Gone are the days of the mud field and the “it doesn’t exist” myths around this particular Gigafactory and to replace all of that drama is the excitement of the Chinese people as they take deliveries of their vehicles — both the Model 3 and Model Y.

Ray4Tesla shared that deliveries of Tesla’s MIC Model Ys went smoothly in 10 cities across China and that all vehicles were disinfected before deliveries to prevent the spread of Covid-19. In fact, each vehicle came with a Covid disinfection kit. This is smart!

Ray also shared a video from a Weibo account of the MIC Model Ys having their covers taken off at a ceremony. I hope when I get my Cybertruck we can throw a party, because the videos and photos coming in from China are simply inspiring.


When asked about his expectation for Q1 deliveries of the Tesla Model Y in China, Ray guessed 85,000 but noted that the production rate isn’t known yet. The next catalyst, he noted, is FSD rollout to Tesla owners.

Final Thoughts

It’s really exciting to see the progress Tesla has made in China, especially since the government has been very supportive of Tesla and its mission. The US should definitely take notes, and laggard states that still don’t allow Tesla stores should end their love affairs with dealerships while embracing the new technology that Tesla, as well as other EV makers, have to offer.

China knows it has a problem with air pollution, and Tesla not only has the coolest technology but also the ongoing innovation to solve that issue by creating a product that helps clean up the air. Not the mention the inspirational mission and extremely hot brand appeal. Tesla was certainly winning in China in 2020. Expect more of that in 2021.

The Tesla Model 3 was the top selling electric vehicle in China in 2020 (by far). Where will the Model 3 and the popular new Model Y rank in 2021? Place your bets now.

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Johnna Crider

Johnna owns less than one share of $TSLA currently and supports Tesla's mission. She also gardens, collects interesting minerals and can be found on TikTok

Johnna Crider has 1996 posts and counting. See all posts by Johnna Crider