In July, 70 percent of China-made vehicles were exported.

The large number of exports from Tesla's Shanghai plant has often caused the automaker's local deliveries in China to fluctuate dramatically. While this presents something of a pattern, the company's direct explanation makes things clearer.

"Tesla makes cars for export in first half of quarter & for local market in second half," the company's CEO Elon Musk's account wrote on Weibo today in both Chinese and English.

Apparently, the content was not posted by Musk himself, but by the account's Beijing-based operations team. Musk's Twitter account did not post the information.

In fact, previous delivery figures from Tesla's Shanghai plant have shown this pattern.

In July, Tesla sold 28,217 China-made vehicles, down 64.24 percent from 78,906 in June and 14.41 percent from 32,968 in the same month last year, according to data released earlier this month by the China Passenger Car Association (CPCA).

But the decline was caused by the shutdown of part of Tesla's production line at its Shanghai plant from late July to early August for upgrades.

Tesla China exported 19,756 vehicles in July, meaning 8,461 vehicles were delivered to local consumers, a ratio of 70 percent, 30 percent, respectively.

In January, Tesla sold 59,845 China-made vehicles, including 40,499 vehicles exported, or 68 percent.

In April, due to the Covid lockdown, Tesla's Shanghai plant sold only 1,512 China-made vehicles, without any exports.

But the vehicles that should have needed to be exported at the beginning of the second quarter were made up in May.

Tesla sold 32,165 China-made vehicles in May, including 22,340 for export, or 69 percent.

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