It seems that the first Tesla in Pakistan has landed. A white 2017 Tesla Model S 75D has gone viral on social media, with Pakistani motorists now eyeing up the Tesla vehicle.
However, there is some debate over the status of the vehicle in question. Clearly it is licensed to the United Kingdom, based on its plate, so this seems like an import of some nature, or possibly even a hoax and merely a Tesla owner from Britain driving the car around Pakistan in some context.
Tesla In Pakistan debate
However, there is still some debate over the release of Tesla vehicles in Pakistan, despite the keenness of Pakistani consumers to import the vehicles. There is currently no concrete information available regarding the customs duty and overall recommended retail price of the Tesla electric vehicles in the Asian subcontinental nation. But certainly Tesla in Pakistan would be an interesting development.
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Establishing itself as the major manufacturer of electric vehicles on the planet, Tesla has previously produced three separate electric vehicles. The Model S and Model X have recently been joined by the Tesla Model 3, characterized by a 15-inch bezel-less touchscreen panel inside the vehicle.
The price of the Model S in the United States is around $58,000, but when imported to Pakistan the price escalates to approximately $75,000. According to Pakistan Customs Tariff 2016-17 (PCT code heading/subheading– 8703.9020), there is a 50 percent customs duty due on electric vehicles based on the recommended retail price of these products.
This does seem something of an anomaly in a climate in which more green vehicles are certainly needed, particularly in a developing economy such as Pakistan. The launch of Tesla in Pakistan is set to be successful regardless of the price of its vehicles, but certainly critics will suggest that the government should do more to make this environmentally friendly form of transport more affordable.
Considering the obviously lesser levels of disposable income in a country such as Pakistan, electric vehicles obviously make sense for everyday consumers. There are significantly lower maintenance costs associated with Tesla cars, aside from the obvious considerations related to fuel.
However, complicating the launch of Tesla in Pakistan is the problems that can arise if anything goes wrong with a particular vehicle. Any major form of damage that involves the importation of parts will end up costing a huge amount of money in Pakistan, as there is currently absolutely no Tesla infrastructure in the country whatsoever.
And the supercharger network for electric cars in Pakistan is conspicuous by its absence, meaning that travelling long distances with Tesla in Pakistan is effectively impossible. While Tesla would love to establish networks in every country in the world, this is completely unfeasible at present.
Pakistani consumers will also not benefit from some of the provisions afforded Western buyers of Tesla vehicles. For example, the electric car manufacturer has recently announced a deal with Telia Sonera for the carrier to power in-car systems in Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Estonia, and Latvia. Needless to say, no such deal has been established in Pakistan.
So the launch of Tesla in Pakistan is undoubtedly exciting for motorists in the region. But there is a long way to go before the iconic electric cars become a fixture in this South Asian nation.