|Racing with the Big Boys...|
The Californian carmaker had a historical month in Norway
Tesla Real Competition
Unlike other players in the market, which thrive on ICE car sales, Tesla depends entirely on the the fully electric Model S, so in order to survive, it has to go after sales of other Fullsize/ E-Segment cars across the globe, let's see how they are doing in their most important markets:
USA - With 1.600 units sold in March, the Model S is far, far away from the 13.000 units sold by the Chevy Impala, but if we consider Tesla as Premium, the Best-Seller is the Mercedes-Benz E-Class at 5.660 units and Tesla ends up in #9 on the ranking, so a lot of space to grow but also a lot of work to do here. What if we push the Model S as a Premium Sports Sedan? Then things get a bit rosier, as only the BMW 6-Series and the much cheaper MB CLA sell more than Tesla.
Norway - #1 in March, #1 YTD. Enough Said.
Netherlands - 190 units sold in March grant it the #2, just 15 units behind the BMW 5-Series, E-Segment Best-Seller.
Germany - The 143 Teslas sold in March mean that it's already making a (small) dent in the Vaterland of Premium cars, it's far from the thousands/month of the 5-Series/E-Class/A6, but the 300/400 monthly units of the fullsize sport sedans Panamera and Audi A7 seem like an approachable goal in the future.
Switzerland - It's new sales record (105 units in March) it's still halfway through the 200 units/month of the E-Class...
Denmark - Another #2 spot for the Model S (79 units), just 4 units behind the leader MB E-Class.
Trends in the G7
Other than the otherworldly performance of Norway, where three plug-ins entered the global Top10 (Model S in #1, Leaf #4, VW e-Up! in #9 and BMW i3 in #10), a no less relevant fact is that the BYD Qin is by far the new Best Selling EV in China with 2.384 units YTD, with the 2012 record of the Chery QQ3 EV (5.305 units sold in one year) waiting to be shattered to pieces. With lots of new entrants this year (Denza EV, Venucia e30, BYD Tang...), it looks that this will be finally the year Zero of plug-ins in China.
In other news, we see the Leaf stepping ahead in the US and Japan, while the Outlander PHEV is back at #1 in the Netherlands.
Looking at EV shares, Norway is out of orbit (16,22%!), while in the Netherlands it's rising again (Now at 3,13%) and in Germany the EV share has finally increased significantly (0,32% in '14 vs 0,23 in '13 and 0,20% in '12). The others are stable with the only dark spot being France, with 0,57% share (But in February it was 0,47%, so recovery can be on the way).
New sales records in several european countries: 212 units in Switzerland, 144 in Denmark, 166 in Austria, 252 in Belgium, 428 in Sweden, all of these contribute to record EV Shares there: 0,56% in Switzerland (0,44% last year), 0,62% in Denmark (0,29%), 0,41% in Austria (0,26%), 0,37% in Belgium (0,17%) and 1,15% in Sweden (0,71%).
There other markets progressing, Ireland is at 0,20% vs 0,08% last year, Estonia is at 0,89% vs 0,68% and Iceland has passed the 1% barrier, as it's now at 1,10% EV share.
Unfortunately there are markets where plug-ins are suffering, as it's the case of Spain, despite government incentives, the EV share is down from 0,17% to 0,09% share, while in Hong Kong the EV share is surprisingly down to 0,17%, when last year it ended with 0,39%, using the Nissan Leaf as a golden standard example, 4 Leafs were sold this year, when in the same period of last year it already had been registered eight...Are consumers saving for the upcoming arrival of Tesla?
Questions for April
1 - Where will be beaten the next sales records?
2 - Will Tesla surprise us again? Where?
3 - Will the Outlander PHEV surprise us? Where?
4 - Who will be #1 in Norway? Model S, Golf or Leaf?
5 - Will the signs of recovery continue in France?
6 - How many #1's will the BMW i3 collect?