Vietnamese EV maker VinFast misses 2023 deliveries goal, but Q4 up

HANOI (Reuters) – Vietnamese electric vehicle (EV) maker VinFast on Thursday said it delivered nearly 35,000 cars in 2023, below its target of at least 40,000 units, blaming slow EV adoption in some regions, tough competition and uncertain economy.

The deliveries in the last three months of 2023, however, increased 35% against the third quarter to 13,513 units, the company said.

VinFast, which started to deliver its sport utility vehicle (SUV) VF 8 in California last March, earlier this month flagged a plan to set up manufacturing and battery facilities in India. It also aims to expand in more markets in the Middle East, Latin America and Asia, including Indonesia.

“We saw a significant ramp up in vehicle deliveries in the fourth quarter 2023 compared to previous quarters,” Tran Mai Hoa, VinFast’s Deputy CEO of sales and marketing said in a statement.

“However, against a challenging market backdrop, EV adoption rate in certain regions has been slow, leading to fewer deliveries than we anticipated,” she added.

Although VinFast did not give a clear breakdown of sales by markets in Thursday’s announcement, about 60% of the deliveries in the second and third quarter went to its affiliate Green SM (GSM), a Vietnam-based taxi operator and leasing provider mostly owned by VinFast’s CEO, Pham Nhat Vuong.

In October, a senior VinFast official told Reuters the company would expand sales to GSM this year.

VinFast, which is yet to make a profit, entered the EV market at a time when car prices were under pressure, led by cuts at market leader Tesla and Chinese companies including BYD.

(Reporting by Phuong Nguyen; Editing by Tomasz Janowski)