Electric vehicle maker Tesla Inc is in trouble as it faces scrutiny in China over safety and customer service complaints. Faced with the situation Tesla is asking its engagement with mainland regulators and beefing up its government relations team, Reuters reported, citing industry sources.
More From Reuters
Tesla's change of strategy leading to more behind-the-scenes interaction with policymakers in Beijing compared to relatively little previously shows the seriousness with which the U.S. automaker views the setbacks in its second-biggest market.
It also comes at a time when China is trying to regulate large and powerful private companies, especially in the technology sector, on concerns about their market dominance. read more
Tesla did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Monday, a public holiday in China.
As they do elsewhere, regulators in China, the world's biggest auto market, discuss industry policies and standards with global and local companies, industry associations and think tanks.
Manufacturers typically join such meetings in China, but unlike rivals including Toyota Motor (7203.T) and General Motors Co (GM.N), Tesla officials were largely absent from the closed-door gatherings, according to four people familiar with the matter.
Instead, Tesla officials regularly speak at high-profile industry conferences. Outside China, Tesla's outspoken chief executive Elon Musk regularly takes to Twitter to comment on or criticise regulators or rules.
But in past weeks, Tesla executives attended at least four policy discussions, on topics including auto data storage, vehicle-to-infrastructure communication technologies, car recycling and carbon emissions, the people said.
California-based Tesla, which makes electric Model 3 sedans and Model Y sport-utility vehicles at its own plant in Shanghai, did not make major commitments at the meetings, but participated in some discussions, they said.
Tesla is also expanding its government relationship team in China, one of the sources said.
According to two recruitment advertisements in April on its WeChat account, Tesla is hiring managers to update a policy database and maintain relationships with government and industry associations to "build a harmonious external environment to support Tesla's business development in the regional market."
Read full report here
(With inputs from Reuters)