Home » BYD Is Outpacing Tesla In EV Production So Far This Year

BYD Is Outpacing Tesla In EV Production So Far This Year

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It is the nature of attention-seeking journalism to turn any quantifiable comparison between two products, artists, companies, et cetera into a horse race. This is often lazy and reductive. In other news, today’s top story is: BYD’s production increases so far have just edged out Tesla’s through the first three quarters of the year.

I want to highlight the success of BYD and Tesla this morning not merely for the ongoing derby-ness between these, the two biggest makers of battery-powered cars, but for what it says about the global electric car market. Plus, I think it’s important to consider that the woes of traditional automakers in this changing environment don’t mean that there isn’t still significant EV demand.

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Do you want two pieces of Tesla news in your Morning Dump? Probably not, but Tesla scored yet another court victory and it’s quite notable. Hey, speaking of traditional automakers, guess what group thinks they’ll have to pay about $10 billion in fines if fuel economy rules go forward as planned? And then let’s round it out with some good news about the Kia Carnival.

BYD EV Production Up 81% Year-Over-Year, Tesla Up 45%

Byd Dolphin

Clear definitions are important when talking about electric cars. Is it electric or electrified? Is it a pure BEV, a PHEV, or just an HEV? Chinese automaker BYD is the largest maker of electrified vehicles in that it makes almost twice as many cars that you can plug into a wall as Tesla.

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Tesla, though, makes more solely electric vehicles, specifically BEVs (or Battery Electric Vehicles). Whereas BYD makes about as many BEVs as they do PHEVs (Plug-In Hybrids).

This year, however, BYD’s BEV production is starting to outpace its PHEV production, while also growing at almost twice the rate of Tesla. Let’s look at some numbers (via CarNewsChina and InsideEvs).

So far this year, BYD has produced 2.11 million electrified vehicles, which is an increase of 77% over 2022. Of those, 1.1 million were BEVs, for an increase of 81% year-over-year through the first three quarters of 2023. By comparison, Tesla has produced 1.35 million BEVs, for a YoY increase of 46%. The third quarter was the first time in a while that Tesla didn’t set some kind of sales/production record, but the company also had factory upgrades that slowed production a little.

Comparing and contrasting BYD and Tesla is a fun exercise because of the differences and similarities. Tesla has a huge advantage in that it can sell in the United States and buyers can qualify for tax credits. It’s also probably the most regarded electric car brand in the world. BYD, though, has some huge advantages as a Chinese company with a home market that’s being pushed towards electrification. Tesla builds and sells a lot of cars in China, whereas BYD isn’t currently incentivized to sell cars in the United States for both practical economic and political reasons.

If this rate continued, BYD would likely catch up to Tesla and surpass it in BEV production, but factors as diverse as the Chinese company’s acceptance in Europe and softness in the Chinese economy could cause it to slow down. To some extent, a lot of this growth is due merely to how restrained production remained last year due to the aftershocks of COVID.Screen Shot 2023 10 03 At 9.24.28 Am

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Also, hey, there’s a new base Model Y RWD. It only gets 260 miles of range and has a 0-60 mph time of just 6.6 seconds. It also only costs $43,990, or about $36,490 post-tax credit. That’s, huh, that’s a great deal. When people tell me they want an electric crossover and they see how cheap a Model Y is it’s hard to convince them to buy anything else. The cheapest Ioniq 5 is $45,500 and gets better range (303 miles), but without the tax credit is less attractive.

The new Volvo EX30 will officially cost $34,950 when it goes on sale and offers 275 miles of range, but in a seemingly much smaller package. I think the success of both companies shows there is, globally, a lot of appetite still for electric vehicles. I think the ability of Tesla, BYD, and now Volvo to offer more affordable cars in various markets shows that price parity between ICE and EVs is closer than we think.

Tesla Avoids Class Action In Autopilot Case

2024 Tesla Model 3 Rear 2Tesla’s lawyers managed another victory when it got a U.S. District Court to rule against a potential class action lawsuit over claims surrounding Autopilot claims.

Per Reuters:

The ruling means Tesla will not have to face class action claims on behalf of much larger groups of vehicle owners.

U.S. District Judge Haywood Gilliam in Oakland, California, in a decision issued on Saturday said four Tesla owners who filed a proposed class action last year had agreed to arbitrate any legal claims against the company when they accepted its terms and conditions while purchasing vehicles through a Tesla website.

Companies love putting in arbitration clauses for this very reason, so be warned the next time you sign one.

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New MPGe Calculations Could Cost GM And Stellantis $9.5 Billion

HybridfrontThe Biden Administration’s proposed Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards are designed to encourage automakers to move towards more fuel-efficient vehicles. The Inflation Reduction Act is the carrot, but CAFE is definitely the stick.

Our pal David Shepardson at Reuters has seen a letter from the American Automotive Policy Council (an industry group for Ford, GM, Stellantis) to the Department of Energy (DOE) pointing out that this kind of sucks for American automakers. Here’s the key bit from the report:

The previously unreported letter asked the Department of Energy (DOE) to reconsider its plan to revise the “Petroleum Equivalency Factor” that will result in “disproportionately higher compliance costs” for U.S. automakers.

Detroit’s three automakers face $2,151 per vehicles in compliance costs compared with $546 per vehicle on average sold by other automakers, the letter said, and the policy “would reward those auto manufacturers resisting the transition to a fully electric future the most.”

Basically, automakers get credit for MPGe (or the equivalent MPG for a non-pure-ICE vehicle) every time they make an electric, hybrid, or hydrogen vehicle. The higher the MPGe is calculated the more of an offset automakers can claim for their gas-powered vehicles. If the DOE lowers that calculation, it means automakers like GM have to either pay fines or somehow make their remaining gas vehicle portfolio that much more efficient.

This is the point of having a stick, of course, but politics being what it is these days, this is also a way for the current administration to ease the pain for automakers a bit by maintaining a high MPGe for things like PHEVs.

The Kia Carnival Is Killing It

16970 2022 Carnival 7 PassengerFor whatever reason, I have not yet driven the Kia Carnival and, yet, I conceptually love the Kia Carnival, especially in pop-top form. For once, my taste is shared with the larger population.

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Kia, like Hyundai, has yet again set sales records for the third quarter of 2023. It’s probably more important to note that the brand sold way more of the affordable Kia Steltos and revised Sportage so far this year while the Kia Stinger slowly fades away.

Nope. Not in my Morning Dump. I’m going to talk about the Kia Carnival MPV/minivan thing, which was one of the most delayed vehicles over the last two years. Guess what? Kia sold 4,638 Carnivals in September. That’s way, way, way more than the 1,614 sold in the same month last year, which is an improvement of 187%!!! This isn’t a fluke, either, as Carnival sales have essentially doubled so far this year.

I need to drive one of these. Did you hear that Jeff? IT’S CARNIVAL TIME.

The Big Question

Does BYD catch up with Tesla in BEV production? Will it pass it? When. Put down your marker.

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Freelivin2713
Freelivin2713
9 months ago

Screw Kia (Carnival is a stupid name) All Kia’s=plastic junk

Gee See
Gee See
9 months ago

Well BYD Buses have been in US and Canada for quite a while. That’s a segment that Telsa is missing, which I think they are trying to dig tunnels to compensate?

https://cleantechnica.com/2023/09/30/byd-cars-arent-in-the-us-yet-but-its-electric-trucks-buses-have-been-serving-americans-for-years/

Last edited 9 months ago by Gee See
Manwich Sandwich
Manwich Sandwich
9 months ago

Tesla’s lawyers managed another victory when it got a U.S. District Court to rule against a potential class action lawsuit over claims surrounding Autopilot claims.”

That’s more or less what I expected. Just like all the other times in the past.

Does BYD catch up with Tesla in BEV production? Will it pass it? “

They might. But then we will see what happens beyond the 4th quarter once the Cybertruck ramps up. If the Cybertruck is a hit (as the 1+ million deposits suggest), then Tesla will be back on top.

But it doesn’t really matter. Tesla’s and BYD’s sales growth isn’t coming at the expense of other BEVs. It’s coming mostly at the expense of ICE vehicles.

Pupmeow
Pupmeow
9 months ago

The new trend when class actions don’t work out is to overwhelm the defendant company with thousands of individual arbitrations. Which cannot be combined. I’m hoping this is next for Tesla.

Bork Bork
Bork Bork
9 months ago

Tesla already uses BYD batteries in some of their European and Chinese market cars, I’d say is pretty clear they are going to surpass Tesla.

Parsko
Parsko
9 months ago

BYD ftw Q3 2024.

Who is Jeff???

EmotionalSupportBMW
EmotionalSupportBMW
9 months ago

I took my BYD to a party at BYU, and it was BYOB. So I was SOL.

These new brands always have the worst names. Lynk & Co, Great Wall, Vinfast, Chery, and Brilliance. They sound like H&M rip off clothing stores. Build Your Dreams is cheesier than a potluck outside of Oshkosh.

Last edited 9 months ago by EmotionalSupportBMW
Pupmeow
Pupmeow
9 months ago

Ugh, now I want casserole.

Taargus Taargus
Taargus Taargus
9 months ago

They all sound like cheap crap from Amazon brands.

Dogisbadob
Dogisbadob
9 months ago

This is the point of having a stick, but they keep dropping the manual transmissions 🙁

BYD or someone needs to step in and sell affordable new cars here, since everybody else is gouging. A Mirage shouldn’t cost 17-20k base price. WTF? Just a few years ago you could get one for under 10k.

Bork Bork
Bork Bork
9 months ago
Reply to  Dogisbadob

BYD just started selling in Mexico.

Andreas8088
Andreas8088
9 months ago

Now they just need to make the Carnival with AWD and I’d be paying attention for my van-camping-with-light-offroad needs.

Bizness Comma Nunya
Bizness Comma Nunya
9 months ago
Reply to  Andreas8088

If they made one of these, I’d have one in my driveway right now. That’s all I want, a lightly lifted AWD minivan from the factory. Sure you can lift Sienna’s, Pacificas, etc.. but I’d much rather this was done at the factory.

The Sienna woodland sounds great except for the stupid 2nd row design that you can’t remove easily, and Toyota doesn’t want you to remove it at all for (I think) the seat mounted airbags.

Andreas8088
Andreas8088
9 months ago

Yeah, for sure. I have a 2nd gen AWD Sienna right now that I use for such things. It’s got a solar install and house battery, as well as a bed and a fridge in the back and it’s great for weekend trips. But the transmission is starting to go, and it’s probably not going to be worth fixing, so I’ve been looking at replacements. Or, rather, looking FOR replacements… since nobody seems to make a replacement.

Taargus Taargus
Taargus Taargus
9 months ago

The non-removable second row of the new Sienna is a tragedy. So close to being perfect (well it doesn’t look great) but you can get it in green, with AWD, and they’re all hybrids.

HOT_HATCH
HOT_HATCH
9 months ago

The shade of green on the Sienna’s is magnificent. Really wish Toyota would spread the love around their lineup.

Taargus Taargus
Taargus Taargus
9 months ago
Reply to  HOT_HATCH

It really is an awesome green. I we’re slowly seeing green come back as an option for some cars after it nearly becoming extinct as an option. I’m sure that I’m one of dozens that would be swayed into one car over another based on color.

If these Siennas had been available at MSRP (or at all) when I was in the market, I would have considered giving up the removable 2nd row for that green.

David Smith
David Smith
9 months ago

Ended up with a Corolla Cross over a Crosstrek partly because the Cypress is a lovely color.

Nick Ginther
Nick Ginther
9 months ago

I have a Carnival. It was one of the first ones sold around town and I think I was pretty lucky to get it. I had been looking at new 2021 Sedonas as they were starting to get cleared out but once I saw the Carnival I decided to wait. I had called a few Kia dealerships around and the closest one said they had two coming in, one white, one black. I said I’ll take the white one, put down a deposit and picked it up about 3 weeks later. There was one other one running around after we got ours, and I didn’t see any more of them. It’s only been in the last couple of months that I’ve started seeing more and more of them around.

Overall it’s been a pretty good vehicle especially for what we need. Gas mileage kind of sucks. I average about 18 around town and 26-27 on the highway. I’d trade it in in a second if they ever make a hybrid version. I drove a hybrid Sienna and a Pacifica and they were fine but I wanted something different, mpgs be damned. Sort of regret that now but not enough to do anything about it.

Spikedlemon
Spikedlemon
9 months ago

When was the last time we had a new entrant coming across one of the ponds with a successful auto brand? Hyundai/Kia?
It only took them a couple model generations to really kick things into high gear. And they started out with the Hyundai Pony/Excel (not exactly a stellar entry except, maybe, against a Friday-built Yugo).

A solid value proposition from BYD, as someone who’s proven to be able to make solid vehicles, should make Ford/GM lose sleep.

BYD should be wildly more successful than Vinfast.

Matt Sexton
Matt Sexton
9 months ago
Reply to  Spikedlemon

“BYD should be wildly more successful than Vinfast.”

As far as Low Bars To Clear that would akin to stepping over a crack in the sidewalk.

Arch Duke Maxyenko
Arch Duke Maxyenko
9 months ago

Build You Dreams is building dreams for a mostly domestic market that will most likely collapse within a decade, but good for them.

Side bar: Can you please disable the auto playing videos? As much as I love Torch Drives, I hate auto playing videos more.

Andreas8088
Andreas8088
9 months ago

Side bar: Can you please disable the auto playing videos? As much as I love Torch Drives, I hate auto playing videos more.

A-freakin-men to this.

SonOfLP500
SonOfLP500
9 months ago
Reply to  Andreas8088

It would be better if autoplay was off in the first place but on Firefox, at least, you can block autoplay in Settings>Privacy & Security>Permissions.

Space
Space
9 months ago

Much agree, my phone is starting to get too hot to hold on autopian. Not as bad as jallopinick but noticeable.

Thevenin
Thevenin
9 months ago

The CAFE changes are bound to raise a stink, but they’re overdue. As the CAFE calculations currently stand, an electric crossover like a Ford Mach E scores around 380mpge, and can comfortably counterbalance three F-150s. That’s an enormous loophole, and measuring alternative fuel mpg closer to the EPA’s methodology is the best way to close it.

The purpose of CAFE is to reduce energy consumption for strategic or geopolitical reasons, and I’d say it’s not really doing that right now. I’d like to close the light truck loophole entirely, but this is a step in the right direction.

Last edited 9 months ago by Thevenin
Manwich Sandwich
Manwich Sandwich
9 months ago
Reply to  Thevenin

I’d like to close the light truck loophole entirely, but this is a step in the right direction”

That and also rid of the footprint rule

Spartanjohn113
Spartanjohn113
9 months ago

Well… you can still get the Ioniq 5 with the $7,500 tax credit, you just have to jump through the hoops of using the IRA’s lease loophole and then buying out the lease.

As for MPGe, it’s a pretty useless metric that doesn’t show the real-world efficiency of electric vehicles or costs. I’d be a fan of Miles/10 kWh or Miles/naG. naG would represent the national average price-per-gallon of gas for that model year. Right now, that’s roughly 22.35 kWh/$3.80 spent.

By my back-of-the-napkin math, the Mach E GT (at 2.4 miles/kWh) would give you roughly 53 miles per $3.80 spent, which is pretty good! Using the F-150 Lightning (1.8 miles/kWh), that gets you 40 miles per naG. Which is also good! But if you’re only using it only as a commuter, the Maverick’s 37 combined MPG is pretty tempting.

Yes, I admitted this account is primarily Ford Maverick Hybrid evangelizing…which can also be viewed as hybrid-all-the-things!

Data
Data
9 months ago
Reply to  Matt Hardigree

And just think, in 10 or 15 years a Maverick might show up on Shitbox Showdown.

*The current trucky one, not the 70’s car, James Garner, Mel Gibson, or Tom Cruise.

V10omous
V10omous
9 months ago
Reply to  Spartanjohn113

As for MPGe, it’s a pretty useless metric that doesn’t show the real-world efficiency of electric vehicles or costs. I’d be a fan of Miles/10 kWh 

MPGe is just miles/33.7 kWh, you can get the number you seek by dividing by 3.37.

Spartanjohn113
Spartanjohn113
9 months ago
Reply to  V10omous

Yes but by that calculation, a gallon of gas is worth $5.72. Outside of California, it would be pretty misleading for cross-shopping vehicles.

V10omous
V10omous
9 months ago
Reply to  Spartanjohn113

OK, but electricity isn’t the same price everywhere either.

You picked $0.17/kWh, which may be accurate where you live, but around here it’s more like $0.12. Your numbers are off by some 40% for me.

Ultimately, everyone needs to make a local calculation themselves.

Spartanjohn113
Spartanjohn113
9 months ago
Reply to  V10omous

My apologies for the confusion if 17¢/kWh came off as arbitrary. That was cut from my first draft as I thought going step-by-step through the calculations would make for a tedious read. I used 17¢ as the national average, per Energy Sage.

I guess part of my argument is that MPGe hides the cost to consumers behind an opaque calculation. My hope would be each dealership would showcase the cost to customers on a state-by-state basis but that seems unlikely. Maybe it would have to be mandated that customers see the annual energy costs per EV vs. fuel cost for ICE vehicles?

As for those interested in V10omous point about the impact of different prices in different regions, the average price per gas in CA is $6.02/gallon (up 58%! on the national average) while the average kWh cost is 19¢ (up 12%). So with Miles/CaG (California specific), the Mache E comes out to 73 miles per equivalent gallon of fuel cost and the Lightning bumps up to 54 miles/CaG.

Canopysaurus
Canopysaurus
9 months ago

My mother told me never to hang out with carnies.

Paul B
Paul B
9 months ago

The Carnival is doing well because Chrysler stopped making their minivan.

Look at companies that were using minivans as work vehicles, they’re being replaced by Carnivals.

V10omous
V10omous
9 months ago
Reply to  Paul B

Except Chrysler is still making minivans???

Nsane In The MembraNe
Nsane In The MembraNe
9 months ago
Reply to  V10omous

….and offers the only plug in hybrid minivan on the market?

Last edited 9 months ago by Nsane In The MembraNe
BolognaBurrito
BolognaBurrito
9 months ago

Why did I think the Sienna was a plug in?

Nsane In The MembraNe
Nsane In The MembraNe
9 months ago
Reply to  BolognaBurrito

Because it’s a traditional hybrid and Toyota is PHEVing all the things right now. It’s hard to keep them all straight.

Citrus
Citrus
9 months ago
Reply to  V10omous

Hell after the 300 ends production this year Chrysler is ONLY making minivans.

Lincoln Clown CaR
Lincoln Clown CaR
9 months ago
Reply to  Paul B

In addition to what everyone else said, no one is using Carnivals as work vehicles.

JDE
JDE
9 months ago

I had forgotten all about the carnival the other day and then I happened to have one drive in front of me, I gotta say they look like a basic minivan, nothing special, but maybe that is why they are good? Reliable, nothing special and economical?

OrigamiSensei
OrigamiSensei
9 months ago
Reply to  JDE

I know we tend to celebrate the quirky and unusual on this website, but successfully pulling off “reliable, nothing special, and economical” is quite special in my mind.

OFFLINE
OFFLINE
9 months ago

The big problem with the Carnival is it’s sold by Kia dealers. I’d have one in the driveway now if it wasn’t for the, “Oh, and we’re going to tack on a $4k fee to order this for you just because we can.” Screw that.

Pupmeow
Pupmeow
9 months ago
Reply to  OFFLINE

Oh, they’ll tack that fee on, but first they need to “talk to their manager” for 30 minutes at a time.

Nsane In The MembraNe
Nsane In The MembraNe
9 months ago

I love the Carnival. It’s unapologetically weird and legitimately luxurious in higher trims. The top of the line ones have incredible back seats. Unfortunately it’s a gas hog and I’m not sure why there isn’t a hybrid of some sort on offer yet, but most vans are pretty lackluster on gas.

I’d love for the wife and I to get one if we eventually need a family car, but my attempts to vanpill her have only made her more staunch in her stance against them. She just has no interest in anything but SUVs and I don’t think she ever will. It’s unfortunate. I’ve extended many an olive branch to try to get her even a little into cars but she just doesn’t care about them.

V10omous
V10omous
9 months ago

Rent one on a trip. Tell her it was the only thing they had available, or that you got an upgrade.

My wife was anti-van too, until driving one and seeing how lower floors + higher seating + sliding doors really made a lot of things easier with basically no downside.

JDE
JDE
9 months ago
Reply to  V10omous

the weirder flex on a rental is the Chrysler Voyager rental only. Basically a lower option Pacifica I think. but it hits above its weight class as a result. they are legitimately decent for a lot less money when they finally come up for sale tot he public…..but they are at that point also essentially a rode hard prostitute and who wants to marry one of those.

Taargus Taargus
Taargus Taargus
9 months ago
Reply to  JDE

It’s me. I married the van-prostitute hybrid.

I’m the guy who bought an off-rental Voyager. It comes in a trim that at the time (2020) was nicer than the featureless base LX. Includes fake leather, all power doors and tailgate, and a few other doodads. Mostly importantly it has Stow N’ Go and Stow N’ Place (the built in roof crossbars) that the other Voyagers don’t get. Less than 3 years old with 59k for $21,000. My other used van options were mostly similarly equipped Odysseys for, at a minimum, another $10k. So I bought an extended warranty through the dealer for about $2k (bumper to bumper, 4 years 40k miles).

So far we’re really happy with it. If it ends up being a piece of shit over the next couple of years, I’ll get rid of it before the warranty expires. If not, I’ll keep it till it dies.

I try to take solace in that the van was in great cosmetic shape, and that the typical minivan renter isn’t going to drive like a lunatic.

P.S. – The use of hybrid is for the mixing of van, and prostitute, and not the typical mix of gas and electric.

Last edited 9 months ago by Taargus Taargus
V10omous
V10omous
9 months ago

that the typical minivan renter isn’t going to drive like a lunatic.

Anecdotes aren’t data of course, but I do have firsthand knowledge of at least one rental van that was taken on the road course at a Viper owners’ event…

This was several years ago though, before the Voyager was introduced, so I think you’re good.

Taargus Taargus
Taargus Taargus
9 months ago
Reply to  V10omous

That would be my luck!

In all seriousness, there’s a reason I got the extended warranty. Well two.

#1: Chrysler.

#2: That van is quicker than it has any right to be (unloaded), and I wouldn’t be surprised if some renters found flooring it to be entertaining in it’s own silly way. I know I would have.

Manwich Sandwich
Manwich Sandwich
9 months ago
Reply to  JDE

but they are at that point also essentially a rode hard prostitute and who wants to marry one of those.”

Well I like my women dirty, soooo…

Citrus
Citrus
9 months ago
Reply to  V10omous

Seconding this: My mom was ardently anti-van and then we had rental van on a big family trip. After that she was a full-on convert and had three before she had to give up driving.

Taargus Taargus
Taargus Taargus
9 months ago
Reply to  V10omous

That’s the trick. For most people, once they experience how much better vans are at the day to day job of schlepping people and things, they become converts. Forcing a rental might be the way to do that.

My Goat Ate My Homework
My Goat Ate My Homework
9 months ago

Why don’t you get the Van for your car?

Nsane In The MembraNe
Nsane In The MembraNe
9 months ago

She has said she’s amenable to that, but she’d still get a midsized SUV regardless so there’s not really any use in having two haulers. I also want to continue to have a fun-ish car.

My Goat Ate My Homework
My Goat Ate My Homework
9 months ago

Ha, I had the same conversation here. I wanted to get a mini van (I mean actually really wanted to get one) but then my Wife still claimed she needed her own SUV and wants a third row even though we only have 2 kids. So I said forget it and got a Colorado (which is what I actually needed).

Taargus Taargus
Taargus Taargus
9 months ago

Yeah I’m the one with the van, which doesn’t make all that much sense considering I’m commuting in it while my wife does all the pickup and drop off with the Forester. I’m hoping to get something fun as a third car someday so that I can occasionally enjoy something less bulky and sad on the backroads around here.

Nsane In The MembraNe
Nsane In The MembraNe
9 months ago

Exactly. If getting a van means giving my Kona N up it ain’t worth it. Hell, that car was already a compromise in the first place. I wanted the Elantra N but as soon as the wife knew they offered the same powertrain in a crossover she was like “that’s the one you can get” haha.

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