By Michael Elkins
According to a Reuters report, citing people familiar with the matter, Tesla (NASDAQ:) closed the company’s flagship showroom in Beijing, China. The Beijing showroom was located in Parkview Green, an upscale downtown shopping mall. A mall staff member confirmed to Reuters during a site visit on Wednesday that Tesla had closed the showroom.
“Their contract with us has expired and Tesla has decided not to extend it,” the mall staffer said.
The Beijing store, which opened in 2013, was Tesla’s first showroom in China. It was renovated in 2018 and extended to occupy two floors of the mall. Tesla currently owns and operates more than 200 retail locations across the country that display models and conduct test drives for potential buyers. However, in September it was reported that the company was considering closing some showrooms after traffic plunged during COVID restrictions.
The company also plans to highlight sites in less expensive suburban areas that can carry out repairs, as part of its efforts to improve service to customers. As part of this effort, Tesla has recruited technicians and other employees for service positions in China. The company’s recruitment website in China showed 305 openings for service positions as of Wednesday.
Tesla sold 318,151 vehicles in China in the first nine months of 2022, up 55% from a year earlier, according to the China Passenger Car Association. Prices for the company’s Model 3 and Model Y cars have been slashed by up to 9% in China amid signs of slowing demand.
TSLA shares are down 0.03% in pre-market trading on Wednesday.