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Tesla Shows Deference to China After Years of Defiance in U.S.

  • Carmaker issues back-to-back apologetic statements in China
  • CEO has battled with SEC, NTSB and California officials
A customer and a sales assistant sit inside a Tesla Inc. Model Y electric vehicle during a test drive at the automaker's showroom in Shanghai.

A customer and a sales assistant sit inside a Tesla Inc. Model Y electric vehicle during a test drive at the automaker's showroom in Shanghai.

Photographer: Qilai Shen/Bloomberg
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Tesla Inc. has issued back-to-back mea culpas in a matter of days in China, showing deference to government authorities in stark contrast with Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk’s years of combativeness in the U.S.

Shortly after state media broke the news Monday that five Chinese regulators had summoned Tesla representatives over several quality and safety issues, the company pledged to strictly abide by Chinese laws and regulations and strengthen internal management. Last week, the carmaker said it was sorry that a staff member blamed the national grid for damaging a customer’s electric vehicle.