BYD sold four times as many vehicles in China as Tesla

SHANGHAI — China’s biggest electric vehicle (EV) maker BYD said its third-quarter net profit jumped 350% from a year ago, helped by a wider range of product offerings and strong sales that saw it beat Tesla in the world’s largest auto market.

BYD’s net profit for the July-September quarter reached 5.72 billion yuan ($788.75 million), while that for the first nine months increased 281% to 9.31 billion yuan, the company said in a stock exchange filing on Friday.

The result was in line with a forecast the company published last week.

Having scrapped gasoline vehicles from its product mix this year, BYD has, more than any other automaker, been able to capitalize on a range of incentives for electric cars offered by China’s central and local governments.

The company, which is 19% owned by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, has also been able to significantly reduce costs per vehicle on the back of robust sales and a broader product range than other EV competitors.

BYD’s combined sales of pure electric and hybrid plug-in vehicles increased 250% in the first nine months to 1.2 million units, outpacing a 110% rise for the overall EV segment. Tesla sold just over 318,000 electric vehicles in China during the first nine months of the year.

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