Chinese electric car maker breaks sales records. There are two reasons for success

Luc Williams

BYD is China’s best-selling car brandBYD sold almost 1 million cars of all types in the second quarter, solidifying a rebound from a slow start to the year. The excellent sales performance was partly due to the company’s decision to lowering prices most models undertaken earlier this year at the expense of profitability.

When it comes to fully electric vehicles, Shenzhen-based car giant’s quarterly sales of 426,000 unitsputs it on the verge of once again overtaking Tesla as the world’s largest seller of electric vehicles.

According to analysts’ forecasts Tesla sold a total of 439,301 electric vehicles in the second quarterwith sales declining in key markets such as China and Europe.

Record sales in the second quarter

In the period From April to June, BYD sold a record total of 982,747 passenger cars. In June, it was 340,211 electric and hybrid passenger vehicles, also a record for a month. Exports also rose by more than 100,000 for the first time in a quarter as trade tensions rose.

Best Quarter Ever: BYD’s Record Sales Growth After Slow Start to Year. / Bloomberg

Response from United States, and recently European Uniondue to Chinese exports of electric vehicles, could undermine BYD’s global ambitions in key markets. In Europe, sales are weak even before additional tariffs are fully imposed.

Outlook for the third quarter

“The outlook for the third quarter may be different,” Yuqian Ding, head of China Autos Research at HSBC Qianhai Securities, said in an interview. “Demand may be weak, some manufacturers may resort to aggressive pricing, and there may also be some seasonal promotions at their disposal.”

In the second quarter, BYD introduced its first hybrid pickup truck in Mexico to expand its business into a new type of vehicle. The car brand also unveiled a new plug-in hybrid platform with a range of more than 2,000 km, which will further boost sales.

BYD has sold 1.61 million electric and hybrid vehicles this yearup 29% from the same period last year, lagging behind smaller rival Geely Automobile Holdings, which saw sales rise 41% during the same period. Hangzhou-based rival BYD on Monday raised its annual sales target by 5% to 2 million cars. BYD remains on track to sell 3.6 million units by the end of the year.


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