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Tesla names new country manager for S. Korea

All Headlines 14:44 May 12, 2020

SEOUL, May 12 (Yonhap) -- U.S. electric carmaker Tesla Motors Inc. on Tuesday named a financial expert as country director for South Korea.

Kim Kyung-ho, 44, will begin his term at Tesla Korea on Monday after serving as vice president at the Korean branch of U.S.-based bank State Street for seven and a half years through Friday, a company spokeswoman said over the phone.

Until Kim's appointment, Ivonne Chan, Tesla's country director for Taiwan, had supervised Korean operations as well, she said.

Kim studied economics at New York University and worked at Daewoo Securities and U.S.-based asset management firm BlackRock before moving to State Street.

This file photo provided by Tesla shows Kim Kyung-ho, who will serve as country director of the U.S. carmaker's South Korean operations from Monday. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE)(Yonhap)

From January to March, Tesla sold a total of 4,070 vehicles in the Korean imported passenger car market, following Mercedes-Benz's 15,400 unit sales and BMW's 11,331 unit sales, according to the trade ministry.

The quarterly result is sharply up from the 230 units Tesla sold in Asia's fourth-biggest economy during the same period of 2019.

Tesla Korea sells models such as the Model 3, Model S, and Model X.

The Model 3, Model S and Model X are available at the starting prices of 54 million won (US$44,000), 114 million won and 121 million won, respectively.

Customers can purchase the models at lower prices with a central government subsidy of 8 million won and a provincial government subsidy worth up to 10 million won.

Since it entered the Korean market in March 2017, Tesla has built about 450 slow-charging stations and 32 superchargers across the country. It takes 10 hours to fully charge a Tesla vehicle at a slow charger, but it takes about an hour at a supercharger.

This file photo provided by Tesla shows the Model 3 launched in South Korea on Aug. 13, 2019. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)

kyongae.choi@yna.co.kr
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