Tesla customers could lose thousands in tax credits next year


Tesla has hit a speed bump that will cut subsidies for customers buying its electric vehicles in the USA, after Elon Musk's carmaker hit a milestone of 200,000 sales. Those tariffs raised the price on Tesla Model S to USD142,000 from about USD115,000, according to 24-7 Wall Street.

"It's like you just took all the highways away from L.A. or something", Musk told Bloomberg, adding that Tesla's workers had to scramble to manually assemble auto components. The new vehicle identification registrations come at a time when Tesla is actively pushing its deliveries for the Model 3.

When Nikkei Asian Review reached out to Panasonic, Tesla's battery partner at its Nevada Gigafactory, the company said, "We have not received any specific production requests".

Tesla did not immediately respond to a request for comment, but the company told Fortune in June that production numbers couldn't be faked because the figures are "updated in real-time on screens in the factory, plainly visible to anyone passing by".

Tesla has delivered 200,000 electric cars to buyers in the United States, a spokesperson said on Thursday, meaning tax credits will now begin to be lowered, while rivals such as Mercedes-Benz, BMW AG and Audi AG will bring electric models to the market with a full tax credit in place. Then it will halve to $3,750 for the first half of 2019 and halve again for the second half. There are still state-level incentives available, however, which Tesla has also laid out on its site. Mr Musk, 47, said more than two years ago that he expected Tesla to produce more than 500,000 vehicles in 2018 at its lone car-assembly plant in Fremont, California, but the company is well off that pace because of the Model 3's slow start. The National Labor Relations Board now is looking into allegations that Tesla previous year dismissed almost 1,000 workers at its Fremont plant because they advocated for a union.

The announcement comes amid an increasingly bitter U.S. China retaliated by imposing an nearly identical tariff, meaning Chinese consumers who want to own a Tesla will have to spend an additional $30,000. CEO Elon Musk, for one, noted on Twitter that the Model 3, while newer than the Model S, is not a superior vehicle. It also simplifies the supply chain, Gupta pointed out. Once installed in a Tesla vehicle, it gets shipped back to Asia to reach customers there.