Elon Musk is turning off potential Tesla buyers – report - SUV VEHICLE

Elon Musk is turning off potential Tesla buyers – report

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While he has a dedicated following, Musk’s ‘polarising persona’ is costing Tesla customers, according to a new survey.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s “polarising persona” is turning away new-car buyers considering a Tesla – and causing a decline in the car maker’s reputation around the world, including Australia – according to new research.

Data by market intelligence firm Caliber – cited by news agency Reuters – claims the pool of buyers considering Tesla for their next vehicle in the US has dropped from 70 per cent in November 2021 to a new low of 31 per cent in February 2024.

Caliber suggested “strong associations between Tesla’s reputation and that of Musk” contributed to the decline in consideration.

It suggested the Tesla CEO’s “increasingly right-wing politics and public statements” are impacting Tesla’s reputation and sales, including his ownership of social media platform Twitter, which he renamed ‘X’.

Musk became Tesla CEO in 2008 after joining the US-based electric car maker as a board member in 2004.

“A modest but growing number of EV [electric vehicle] shoppers are increasingly put off by Elon Musk’s behaviour and politics and are now finding viable alternatives to Tesla in the marketplace,” Ed Kim, president of consultancy agency AutoPacific, told Reuters.

The Caliber survey showed Tesla’s ‘consideration score’ – a rating of how many people are considering the brand – fell eight per cent in January 2024 alone while Mercedes-Benz, BMW and Audi scores increased to between 44 and 47 per cent.

The news outlet also said a separate study by consumer analytics firm CivicScience showed 42 per cent of those surveyed had a negative view of Musk, compared to 34 per cent in April 2022.

Data collected by Reuters showed a decline in Telsa’s brand reputation in major countries around the world, including Germany, Sweden and Australia – with the car maker Australia’s least trusted car brand, according to research company Roy Morgan.

Its reputation is said to have improved in China, however, which the news outlet says is due to more tightly-controlled media reports.

The results follow the first year-on-year decline in global Tesla quarterly sales since 2020 in the first quarter of 2024 (January to March), with a 1.7 per cent decline in production and an 8.5 per cent lower delivery tally compared to the same period in 2023.

That’s despite record new global electric vehicle sales predicted for 2024, with US sales expected to rise 15 per cent, with Tesla tipped to grow three per cent.

Tesla retained its status as the highest-selling electric car maker in the world for the full year in 2023 – with 1.8 million electric cars sold – yet Chinese maker BYD overtook the US brand in sales for the last three months of 2023.

In Australia, Tesla was easily the most popular electric car brand for 2023, with the Model Y SUV and Model 3 sedan the Top Two selling electric vehicles in the country, followed by the BYD Atto 3 in third.

The post Elon Musk is turning off potential Tesla buyers – report appeared first on Drive.

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