[THE INVESTOR] Tesla consumers in Korea are now eligible to receive the government’s generous subsidy, following a decision to lift a rule that blocked incentives for long-range EVs, Tesla Korea said on Sept. 22.
The Ministry of Environment approved Model S 90D, its first vehicle sold here, to receive EV incentives that could range from 14 million won (US$12,330) to 24 million won, when including the subsidies by local governments that vary.
Two other trim levels that are available in the country -- Model S 75D and 100D -- are being reviewed for final approval.
The iconic US EV maker, which made its debut in Korea early this year, was previously not eligible for the subsidy due to its large battery size. The “charging rule” restricted EVs that take more than 10 hours to be fully charged with a 7 kilowatt-hour low-speed charger from the incentives. As a result, consumers have to pay the full price of 115.7 million won for the Tesla Model S 90D, which takes at least 13 hours to fully charge the car on a standard outlet.
Tesla expects the eased regulation will give a push to its expansion in the country and appeal to more consumers.
It is planning to roll out the performance model for the Tesla Model S by end of this year, after it passes the certification process, according to the company.
Tesla plans to launch Model X SUV in the country early next year to expand the lineup.
As for its much-touted Model 3 sedan, it will take a while to arrive here due to the large volume of preorders, estimated at around 500,000 people worldwide. The local unit expects Tesla’s affordable Model 3 to launch sometime later next year, or in 2019.
By Ahn Sung-mi (email@example.com)