Tesla’s performance in China, the world’s largest auto market, depicts a growing trend towards electric vehicles (EVs), though a new decision made by the Chinese government limits access for state and military personnel to use Tesla’s cars.
The decision follows a security review of Tesla’s vehicles, which reportedly found that Tesla’s sensors could record its surrounding locations, along with obtaining key data, and other personal information from owners’ phones, like contact lists and more.
Bloomberg report about 🇨🇳 military ban on Teslas spooked some. This ban only applies to the use of Teslas on military complexes to prevent “leaking of military secrets”. iPhone has long been banned by 🇨🇳 military for the same reason. Has it affected its sales? NO.
— Ray4Tesla⚡️🚘☀️🔋 (@ray4tesla) March 19, 2021
The ultimate concern for China may be that US officials could share the information with intelligence in the US government. While Tesla’s cars have performed well in the Chinese market, there are also a number of Chinese automakers beginning to produce EVs, including NIO, Li Auto, and Wuling HongGuang, among others.
Last year, Tesla CEO Elon Musk alleged that Chinese EV startup Xpeng Motors had stolen an early Tesla Autopilot source code, which supposedly explains why the company’s navigation system looks so similar to Tesla’s.
Zachary Visconti is a writer with a knack for electric vehicles, technology, and climate change. Currently residing in Santa Rosa, California, Zach loves his partner, his cat, and a good cup of coffee.