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Tesla delivers first Chinese-made Model 3 vehicles

By
Clyde Hughes
Chinese shoppers visit Tesla's new showroom in Beijing last February. Tesla delivered its first  Model 3 cars in China on Monday. Photo by Stephen Shaver/UPI
Chinese shoppers visit Tesla's new showroom in Beijing last February. Tesla delivered its first  Model 3 cars in China on Monday. Photo by Stephen Shaver/UPI | License Photo

Dec. 30 (UPI) -- Tesla delivered its first electric vehicles in China on Monday, its first outside of the United States, as Elon Musk's auto startup looks to ramp up production at its Shanghai plant to 3,000 vehicles per week.

For now, Tesla delivered its first Chinese-assembled 15 Model 3 sedans to employees. The company said it will deliver its first cars from the plant to customers in January.

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"Our aim is to kill all internal-combustion engine cars," Allan Wang, general manager of Tesla China, said.

Tesla hopes to build 150,000 Model 3 vehicles per year at its new Shanghai plant.

Officials said the plant is now making more than 1,000 cars per week with plans of doubling that over 2020, eventually reaching a production rate of 3,000 per week.

China is the world's largest market for electric vehicles and automobiles altogether. It is also one of the most crowded as far as competition.

BMW AG and Daimler AG are fighting for the same market with their own electric vehicles along with local Chinese companies as NIO Inc. and Xpeng Motors.

Tesla's Shanghai plant will also build its Model Y crossover SUV, which will start delivering vehicles by the summer.

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