Tesla appears to be setting the stage for the Model Y’s international ramp, with recent reports indicating that several test units of the all-electric crossover have been sent to South Korea. The Model Y test units’ purpose in South Korea has not been disclosed by Tesla, though the presence of the vehicles suggest that the electric car maker may be looking to ramp its deliveries to the Asian country soon.
The Model Y’s journey to South Korea was shared by Tesla container ship and delivery tracker group @VedaPrime. According to the group, three Tesla Model Y that were marked as test vehicles are en route to Busan, South Korea’s second-most populous city. Busan is considered as the economic, cultural and educational center of southeastern South Korea, and it also is home to the country’s busiest port.
Considering that the three Model Y units were marked as test vehicles, there seems to be a good chance that the crossovers were not sent to the country as showroom models. Instead, the Model Ys may have been transported to South Korea for possible regulatory preparations. Such efforts would make sense for Tesla, considering that the company is spreading its reach into the country with the Model 3.
South Korea has proven to be an elusive market for Tesla prior to the arrival of the Model 3. The flagship Model S and Model X captured the attention of a pretty dedicated market, but the vehicles were not mainstream at all. It was not until Tesla started ramping the Model 3 in South Korea that things started to change. Thanks to healthy national and local government incentives for EVs, the Model 3 Standard Range Plus could be bought for less than $27,000.
This has resulted in the Model 3 hitting its stride in South Korea. In the first half of 2020 alone, Tesla saw an annual sales increase of over 1,500% due to the Model 3. The all-electric sedan became so popular that it actually ended up inspiring a 660% surge in electric car imports for South Korea. It should be noted that these numbers were attained by the Model 3, a sedan. The Model Y is a crossover, which plays into a far larger segment.
Elon Musk himself has stated that he expects the Model Y to outsell the Model S, Model 3, and Model X combined. Considering the size and momentum of the crossover segment, the CEO’s words may prove accurate. If this is the case, then perhaps the three Model Ys that were recently sent to Korea would end up being the prelude of insanely impressive things to come from the electric car maker.