Published on October 7, 2019 |
by Zachary Shahan
7. October 2019 by Zachary Shahan
The Tesla Model 3 has taken the US luxury car market by storm. As sales rose high through the roof in the second half of 2018, making Model 3 far from being the best-selling luxury car in the country and the best-selling car of any kind in terms of revenue, fans were excited about the launch of a new era. Critics, on the other hand, saw it as a temporary boom from holders of early reservations that would soon be over, and then lead to a crash in Tesla sales, Tesla Financials and the company as a whole.
The core difference between fans and critics seems to rest in how these various supporters of the company have expected the general public to respond to Model 3 and its many benefits. Critics apparently expected a "meh" response. Of course, Tesla fans expected the market to be huge for a car that has better performance and driving quality than a BMW 3 Series, much better technically than an Audi, and a potential cost of ownership for a Camry or Accord (depending on
For right now, while the verdict is not final, things are looking good for Tesla and Tesla fans. We do not know exact sales figures for Tesla Model 3 in the US, and even educated estimates are very rough estimates before we get more data from Europe and China, but our expectation is that there were between 40,000 and 50,000 deliveries in the United States in the third quarter, and on the more conservative side we have estimated 43,000 US deliveries, which blow away sales of another medium or small luxury car.
The next two charts are interactive charts, you can click through the circles near the top to move from quarter to quarter, note that these interactive charts do not work well on all phones. In general, they are best viewed on a computer.
Withdraw data from almost all other car companies, 43,000 third quarter (Q3) deliveries would mean that Tesla Model 3 accounted for 27% of all small and medium-sized luxury car sales in the country (note that we are only talking about cars here, not pickups and SUVs).
Based on these figures and previous projections, for the first three quarters of the year, Model 3's market share for small and medium-sized luxury cars was 24%. The model's weakest quarter was the first quarter, when Tesla finally began shipping cars to Europe and China, and when US consumer demand was lower anyway due to a 50% reduction in US federal tax credit for Tesla cars. (Tesla was the first company to supply 200,000 electric vehicles in the country, leading to a tax credit reduction from $ 7500 to $ 3750 on January 1, 2019. July 1, it went down to $ 1875. January 1, 2020, unless Congress changes something – something that seems unlikely with the grim reaper running the show and killing everything in sight in the Senate – the tax deduction for Tesla buyers will disappear altogether, while all other automakers will still benefit from tax credit because they were electrifying laggards. I know, that's weird.)
While a 24% market share – 1 in every four sales in this market – seems wild, what blows the heads of many Tesla Model 3 owners are that some still buy an Audi A4, Volvo S60, BMW 320i, Mercedes C300, etc. These cars and others in this class do not match the Model 3 in any important way, and they are much worse in several ways. That being said, we know the main reasons why Model 3 sales are not higher – most consumers are unaware of the car, know very little about the car, haven't driven or driven the car, or have negative misinformation in their hearing around Tesla and Model 3.
One thing to keep in mind, especially now that Capital One has published about it, is that the resale values of used luxury car competitors are now suffering as the Model 3 is on the market in full flow. As the resale values of these BMW, Mercedes, Audi, Lexus, Acura and other luxury cars go down, companies that lease them must raise leasing prices to cover costs – making them even less attractive. Consumers who buy these models and see them fall in value so deep so quickly are more likely to consider their brandlessness and perhaps jump ship to Tesla.
Where will Tesla and its Model 3 go from here? We will keep you updated as more registration data comes from Europe, China and elsewhere and as the market develops.
* Tesla reports quarterly sales and does not break them by country or region. Eventually we get registration data from Europe, China (least educated estimates) and Canada and then can make a more solid estimate of US sales for the quarter, as well as monthly sales estimates. However, it's a bit early for all this since we don't have September figures from most countries yet. Even our dear computer friend and contributor Jose Pontes from EV Volumes didn't want to go too far on a limb and give an early estimate that he might have to go back. That said, when I look at previous months' data, September figures from the Netherlands and Norway and deeper historical data, I feel comfortable estimating sales of Model 3 between 40,000 and 50,000 in the US in the third quarter. For this report I have settled 43,000.
If you want to buy a Tesla Model 3 instead of a Camry, Accord, Civic or Corolla and you also get 1000 miles of free supercharging in the process , please use my reference code: https://ts.la/zachary63404.ebrit19459009]