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Tesla working on India entry, process begins in January: Elon Musk

Tesla CEO Elon Musk on Monday revealed plans for the India entry of the electric car maker, saying the process to bring Tesla cars to India will begin in January 2021.

Earlier this month, Musk had said the electric car maker was finally ready to enter the India market next year.

Reacting to a tweet by Tesla Club India that is there an India team working on the next year for sure scheduled Tesla entry, Musk said: “Will release order configurator probably in Jan.”

It means that Tesla sales teams are working on building custom sales and production orders for the India market, ensuring orders are complete and validated once the configuration is finished.

The move will also open India to select as one of the countries where Tesla cars can be purchased.

However, whether Musk will announce a Tesla plant in India to push Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s domestic manufacturing dream or source them from other facilities (Gigafactory in Shanghai, China is the nearest one) is not yet clear.

Earlier, Musk revealed his plans to bring Tesla cars to India in his response to a Twitter post that asked about the progress on Tesla’s planned entry into India.

“Next year for sure,” Musk said in response to the tweet that posted pictures of T-shirts with “India wants Tesla” and “India loves Tesla” printed on them.

“Thanks for waiting,” he added.

On several occasions earlier, Musk had revealed that he would like to bring Tesla to India, but in a 2018 Twitter post, he cited “some challenging government regulations” as a hurdle.

He also criticised the foreign direct investment norms for the delay in the electric car maker’s entry into the Indian market.

“Would love to be in India. Some challenging government regulations, unfortunately,” Musk had tweeted in response to a Twitter user who wrote “No Tesla in India” on his Twitter handle.

In July this year, he hinted at allowing Tesla’s Indian fans to drive an electric Model 3 “hopefully soon”.

However, the new tweets give a more definitive timeline of Tesla’s entry into India.

This comes at a time when India is ramping up charging infrastructure for electric vehicles with the aim of significantly increasing the proportion of electric vehicles plying on the roads.

In 2015, Modi visited Tesla headquarters at Palo Alto, California and met Musk who gave Modi a tour of the company’s electric car plant.

Tesla has not launched any of its electric cars in India or any other country in South Asia yet. The only Asian market where Tesla has a presence is China.