SEOUL, April 15 (Yonhap) — U.S. electric vehicle maker Tesla Inc.’s sales in South Korea nearly quadrupled last year from a year earlier on rising popularity of its vehicles, its financial statement showed Thursday.

Tesla Korea said in a regulatory filing that it logged 716.2 billion won (US$640 million) in sales in the Korean market in 2020, up 295 percent from a year earlier.

Its annual operating profit soared 429 percent on-year to 10.7 billion won, and its net income skyrocketed 507.7 percent to 7.9 billion won, the company said.

According to Seoul-based Carisyou Data Lab, 11,826 Tesla vehicles were sold in 2020, compared with 2,430 units a year earlier. The company did not release its sales data.

Tesla debuted the Model X SUV in the Korean market in 2018 and rolled out the entry-level Model 3 in 2019 to meet growing demand for eco-friendly vehicles.

The automaker in February launched the Model Y compact SUV and vowed to build supercharger stations in 27 spots in the country and expand maintenance centers this year to improve the EV infrastructure.

According to data from the Korea Automobile Importers and Distributors Association and automakers, Tesla accounted for one-fourth of EV sales in South Korea last year.

The data also showed that imported EV sales reached 15,183 units in 2020, and Tesla represented 77.9 percent of them.’