In 2013, Tesla Model S Outsold Mercedes-Benz S-Class, BMW 7 Series, Audi A8, Lexus LS and Porsche Panamera

6 months ago by Eric Loveday 26

Model S

Model S

With 2013 sales data now fully in the books, a class leader has been declared: Tesla Model S.

Model S

Model S

US sales for the Model S in 2013 checked in at ~ 17,650 units, which puts Tesla’s electric sedan well ahead of its large luxury sedan competitors.

  • Mercedes-Benz S-Class: 13,303
  • BMW 7 Series: 10,932
  • Lexus LS: 10,727
  • Audi A8: 6,300
  • Porsche Panamera: 5,421

As Forbes states:

“We won’t know precisely how many of the 22,300 Teslas the company delivered wound up in the U.S. until the company’s earnings report in a couple of weeks. But conservatively it outsold the nearest competitor by more than 30%.”

Tesla aims to sell approximately 35,000 Model S sedans in 2014, so it seems accurate to predict that the Model S could again be the US sales champ in this large luxury category when 2014 comes to an end.

Source: Forbes

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29 responses to "In 2013, Tesla Model S Outsold Mercedes-Benz S-Class, BMW 7 Series, Audi A8, Lexus LS and Porsche Panamera"

  1. Big Solar says:

    Pretty impressive.

  2. Phatcat73 says:

    Impressive indeed. The S is pulling other market segments into it’s price range. Middle class folks who’d never consider purchasing or leasing a car in that price range are giving Tesla a shot due to its low cost of ownership, green benefits and US HQ & US made product.

    I don’t purchase a vehicle over 40k and am holding out for the X.

    1. Dr. Kenneth Noisewater says:

      Then you’ll probably be waiting ’til 2020 or later for a used one, since the X is going to be well above your $40k at launch.

      1. Phatcat73 says:

        my point exactly. I’m willing to go realign my budget for the X.

  3. Taser54 says:

    The S-Class sales figures should be tempered with the fact that the new W222 did not become available in the US until October 2013. Potential owners were waiting for the new model. In October and November 2013, the S class sold over 1900 vehicles each month and December sold 1850. That 3 month average, when extrapolated annually, would exceed the US sales of the Model S handily.

  4. Bloggin says:

    Tesla is doing well with grabbing the $75k+ ‘premium’ dollars.

    But it does not seem to be pulling any sales from the luxury brands, but adding a new ‘toy’ to what they already own. Luxury models all increased for 2013 except for 7-Series down just 1.5%, and was also down 1.8% for 2012.

    But luxury brands are offering plug-in hybrids for 2014 to offer the luxury buyers the best of both worlds.

    Tesla does not have to take away from another to be successful, there is room for everyone.

    1. My2Cents says:

      So you think that all Tesla buyers/owners already have a $75K+ car in their garage and these sales represent them buying another “toy”? Based on what source?

    2. Rick says:

      Plug-in hybrid is not an EV, this is exactly why Tesla is so great, a plug is not a good EV neither a good ICE.

  5. Priusmaniac says:

    I am actually amazed that for the same or even a higher price they still sold 13303 Mercedes-Benz S-Class, 10932 BMW 7 Series, 10727 Lexus LS, 6300 Audi A8 and 5421 Porsche Panamera. That is 46683 people that aren’t aware a new technology is in town after all what’s been said and written. I wonder how many first gen I phones were sold in 2013? Quiet astonishing!

    1. Nix says:

      46,683 more people couldn’t have bought Tesla’s even if they wanted to. Tesla didn’t build that many.

  6. Rob Stark says:

    In the United States the overall car market is up.

    Porsche Panamera is down 2013 7614 units 2012 5421 units

    Lexus LS rebounded somewhat but is way down compared to 2007,

    Exterior dimensions and overall shape more closely resembles A7, 6 Series 4dr, MB CLS and Porsche Panamera.

    Audi A7 + A8 = 14,743. Tesla wins.
    MB CLS 8032 units , down about 35 units
    BMW 6 Series 9762 units, BMW does not break down 2 dr, 4dr and convertible.
    Jaguar XJ 5434 units. Jaguar Brand 16,952 units.

    1. Chris O says:

      Could it be that winter is coming for some of Tesla’s rivals?

  7. ggpa says:

    This is an impressive accomplishment by Tesla … does anybody know how Tesla sales numbers compare with the BMW 5-series?

    1. Rob Stark says:

      BMW 5-Series is a mid-size sedan that starts at under $50k. It sold 56,863 units in the USA.

    2. Chris O says:

      In terms of performance one would have to compare with M5.

      1. Rob Stark says:

        If you want to compare something to a Model S 85 kWh Performance Plus in terms of everything. Exterior dimensions, performance, design it would be a BMW M6.

  8. Ocean Railroader says:

    A Car like a Porsche is truly a money pit on wheels the parts in it are overly complex and they are very hard to get and love to break down. You will spend far more time driving it back and forth from the repair shop then driving it. If the Tesla as far less complex parts in it compared to the Porsche and several other over priced luxury cars then it could be a real Porsche killer.

    1. Chris O says:

      Actually I’m not aware of any quality issues with Porsche. Quite the contrary. I still think TCO of the more expensive Panamera will be double that of Model S though, mostly depreciation.

  9. EV says:

    Just look at the Model S. couldnt name a better looking car than it or a better car than it. Its just the best car ever and thats why it shined and will continue to do so.

  10. ffbj says:

    But they should of called it the Musk-Mobile! jk
    Why does the muskrat guard his Musk; In the misty mist, in the musky musk?
    Courage!
    What makes the Hottentots so hot?
    Courage!
    What have they got that I haven’t got?
    Courage.
    I think Elon and all his compatriots in various ventures have courage in spades.
    They are willing to put it all on the line, and persuade themselves
    that what they are doing is worthy of the efforts they are making.
    So you have a lot of hard-working, courageous, intelligent. people trying to solve
    extremely difficult problems..and they are succeeding.
    (sorry for the rant).

  11. Stephen says:

    Has anyone studied what cars are being replaced by the S? I expect few were these top end luxury cars. My two neighbours that have an S replaced an Audi A4 and a Saab 9-3. The S seems to be a car that has pushed its buyers’ budgets way higher than previously, it is that desirable.

    1. Tom A. says:

      There are a number of stories like that. Quite a few people have financially reached and stretched to get a Model S.

  12. John says:

    Really? Tesla sells approximately 24,000 vehicles last year. That figure is a global figure, not just US sales. Now if you look up the Mercedes Benz “S” Class sales figures for 2013, you’ll see that they sold approximately 91,0000 vehicles. Considering the Tesla Model S is more like an “E” Class Mercedes, why is the media not reporting the truth?

    While I applaud Tesla for being innovative, I cannot understand why so many blindly follow this company. If Tesla is still here a few years from now, then it will be a success. When a company flaunts cherry picked numbers, it makes me a little apprehensive.

    1. Tom A. says:

      These were US comparisons, where the Model S has been on sale for some time. In the US, the Model S is a full-size luxury sedan, the same class as the S Class Benz. The comparisons are perfectly reasonable.

      Tesla has not ramped up production to meed worldwide demand yet. You cannot reasonably compare worldwide sales until Tesla has met demand (they are still supply-constrained, making over 600 units per week).

  13. Mr. M says:

    Thats true… Model S is more like E-Class.