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Tesla opens first Taipei showroom

Tesla opens first Taipei showroom

TAIPEI: Tesla Motors Inc yesterday opened its first showroom in Taipei, making Taiwan its sixth market in the Asia-Pacific region.

The US company said it plans to establish a service center and increase the number of charging stations in Taiwan in the near future.

“I see a huge opportunity in Taiwan’s market,” Tesla global vice president Robin Ren told a news conference, citing the government’s support for electric car development and a growing demand by customers for fuel-efficient and environmentally friendly driving.

Customers can pre-order Model S cars on Tesla’s Taiwan Web site, with the first delivery expected in the first quarter of next year, the company said.

Model S, which can go from zero to 100kph in 2.7 seconds, has a starting price of NT$3.06 million (US$96,420), it said.

Tesla’s factory in California can produce 2,000 vehicles per week, Ren said, adding that capacity will be increased following the delivery of Model S cars in Taiwan.

The company hopes to install more charging stations at Shin Kong Mitsukoshi Department Store branches, in addition to the 400 charging stations already in Taiwan, Tesla’s Taiwan and Hong Kong director Isabel Fan said.

The company also plans to build charging stations near schools and on highways to offer drivers a better charging network, Fan said, without giving a clear schedule for the expansion.

Tesla’s presence in Taiwan is likely to benefit the local manufacturers in its supply chain, including electric-vehicle harness maker BizLink Holding Inc, automative gear maker Hota Industrial Manufacturing Co and power system management supplier Delta Electronics Inc.

BizLink, which is optimistic about its sales outlook for the second half of this year on the back of shipments of Model S, yesterday saw its shares fall NT$1.5 to close at NT$184.5 in Taipei trading, Taiwan Stock Exchange data showed.