Tesla's China Woes
Tesla to cut China workforce as sales miss target. Reuters

Tesla said it will cut jobs in China under a restructuring drive rolled out earlier this year, even as the firm struggles to whet buyers' appetite for luxury electric vehicles in the world's largest car market.

Tesla spokesman Gary Tao said on 9 March that some positions were being eliminated while others were added, but that overall headcount had gone down in a restructuring plan that was announced earlier this year, reports said.

Tao added that the staffing changes were nearly complete.

But Tesla did not specify how many jobs it will cut in China, nor did it comment on a recent report in the Economic Observer that it was eliminating 30% of its staff or about 180 of its 600 employees in China.

Tao said: "The first strategy is to build up a strong and efficient team to respond more quickly to the market, so this is part of the effort to implement that strategy."

Tesla's stock has lost some 12.83% in New York trade this year.

China sales have underperformed aggressive targets set by the US-based high-end electric vehicle maker.

Just under 2,500 Teslas were registered in China last year, according to investment research firm JL Warren Capital, after the automaker began deliveries in April 2014.

China auto market

Passenger-vehicle sales grew at a slower pace in China in 2014 after growth moderated and after more cities imposed purchase bans to combat pollution and traffic congestion.

Sales rose just 10% to 18.9 million vehicles, slowing from 2013's 17% gain, according to China Passenger Car Association data.

In January 2014, Tesla CEO Elon Musk told The Wall Street Journal that he would consider it a success if Tesla were to sell 5,000 vehicles or more in China in 2014.