The Tesla Model 3 has become the best-selling electric car in Europe in February, a month that started just days after the model first arrived in the EU.
With 3657 units shifted last month, not only has the mid-size saloon outsold the likes of the Renault Zoe (2884 cars), but it has also outsold its petrol- and diesel-fuelled rivals including the A4, 3-series and C-Class.
The early rush for the first cars has meant that Tesla could sell as many as it could physically put on a boat. It’ll be interesting to see whether the March and April figures stay close to those from February. However, industry analyst Jato Dynamics says that the level of demand being seen today for the Model 3 doesn’t normally arrive until five or six months after the model first lands.
Interestingly, most Model 3 registrations are also private sales, putting a sword through the potential argument that fleets are simply loading up on them to reap the EV tax benefits.
Other popular EVs last month were the Nissan Leaf, BMW i3 and Hyundai Kona Electric, which took third, fourth and fifth respectively in the charts. EVs as a whole still only make up 1.9 per cent of the market, says Jato, but this is growing and now comprises 20,000 registrations in February.
Norway is leading the way: some 40 per cent of cars registered there in February were electric. Diesel sales have stabilised at 34 per cent of all sales, but that’s still five per cent down versus 2018. It would have been more, after sharp falls in the large French, Spanish, Italian and UK markets, but Europe’s biggest new car market, Germany, offset the drop with an eight per cent rise in diesels sold.