Volkswagen ID.4 showed a slow start of sales in China


In a new market for itself, the German electric car is selling worse than planned. In the first months, only a few thousand units were sold.

The launch of Volkswagen’s MEB-based electric vehicles in China is progressing more slowly than expected. The company has set up a huge production capacity with two joint venture partners FAW and SAIC, but after the first few months, ID.4 sales barely exceed 1,000 units per month.

Reuters reports a “defiantly slow start” with only 1,213 ID.4 units sold in May, down from about 200 units in April. And since the start of sales, this figure has not yet exceeded 5 thousand copies. Volkswagen’s lineup consists of two ID.4s and will be expanded with two ID.6s later this year.

Interestingly, the automaker itself says the ID.4 rollout is proceeding as expected. However, Reuters sources indicate that plant capacity is below 10% and that each version of the ID.4 was supposed to sell between 50,000-60,000 units per year. Moreover, in Europe, Volkswagen ID.4 seems to be selling well.

“The sales are far from meeting initial expectations,” said four sources with knowledge of the issue at once.

For comparison, Tesla Model Y sales exceeded 6,000 in the first two months, and in five months, the electric cross has sold over 30 thousand units.

Among the reasons for such a sluggish start, experts cite fierce competition between electric vehicles in China, the lack of intelligent functions compared to competitors, and the transition to an agency sales model. Currently, the Germans are going to expand their network of showrooms in China to more than one hundred points by the end of 2021. Now there are 12 of them. The number of sales agents will grow from 825 to over 1000. Whether this step will improve sales, we will find out at the end of the year.