Article Claims BMW i Sales Trumped Tesla Model S


BMW i3 - Image Credit: Tom Moloughney

BMW i3 – Image Credit: Tom Moloughney

Tesla Model S

Tesla Model S

There’s this ludicrous article over on with this headline “BMW’s i Series Models Trump Tesla Motors Inc EV Sales.”

Problem is, the headline is entirely wrong.

The article itself states:

German luxury automaker BMW today reported sales just under 18,000 units globally in the first year of sales of its recently launched i Series plug-in models; a number far beyond its own expectations of about 10,000 units.

BMW said it sold 16,052 units globally of its i3 electric city car and 1,741 units of its i8 plug-in hybrid super car in 2014. Combined, the two alternate-energy vehicles account for almost 17,800 unit sales for BMW, 40% of which came from the US alone – where the i3 was launched recently in May.

So, 17,800 units globally among two plug-in models in 2014.

What’s the global Model S sales figures for 2014? 31,655.  Or close to double i3 sales, despite being twice as expensive.

It’s hard for us to believe that such a misleading title made it to print.  It’s not even misleading, it is just wrong.

Our headline, if we were to right such an article, would be “Despite Costing Twice As Much, Tesla Model S Outsells BMW i3 2 To 1.”  That’s the reality of the situation and it can’t be made into an article in which it’s stated that the i3 outsells the Model S.  This isn’t a case of putting a spin on the truth, but rather it’s turning the truth into something that’s factually incorrect.  For whose benefit?

Source: Bidnessetc

Categories: BMW, Sales, Tesla

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14 Comments on "Article Claims BMW i Sales Trumped Tesla Model S"

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Another business website, so they write an article based on what they want the stock to do. My guess is either they have stock in BMW and want their stock to go up, or shorted Tesla and wanted theirs to go down, or both. At least Motley Fool will disclose at the end of an article what they own and therefore can gauge where their leanings lie.

My guess is that they just looked Tesla’s US sales and thought that they were Tesla’s global sales. Journalists in general are not familiar with new technology if it is not in their field of interest and there is no peer review process that would double check the sources if the journalist who wrote the article got things right.

Then we should stop calling them “Journalists”.

My tittle would be … ‘Tesla gets the headline, while EV facts are ignored.’

From Bidnessetc article …
“The news comes as sales for electric and hybrid cars in the US have been stuttering amid the sharp decline in gasoline prices, triggering higher sales of larger, gas-guzzling vehicles over more expensive alternate fuel vehicles.”

“In the US, sales of hybrids and EVs came in at 570,475 vehicles in 2014, down 3.7% over 2012, according to data from the Electric Drive Transportation Association.”

The truth fact being Hybrid had a large decrease in sales, while PHEVs/EREVs had a modest decrease in sale; however all-electric vehicles (BEVs) continued to show strong sales growth.

This adds context the articles comparison of i3 & i8 sales as the i8 is a PHEV with limited EV capabilities and the i3 sold an 50/50 mix of BEv & REx (range extender EREV) editions. All Tesla vehicles in comparison are BEVs.

Time that BEV sales are broken out from PHEV and Hybrid sales.

For 2015 BMW is forecasting ~30,000 and Tesla is forecasting ~55,000 in global sales.

BTW: No reference of the 2014 US Nissan LEAF sales was made. FYI: LEAF US sales were > than i3 global sales.

I think the comparisons was for first year sales. BMW i3 and i8 trumped Tesla’s first year sales. Once BMW’s “production constraint” is fixed, sales will grow at 50% YOY.

So how many is that? Number please.
And is that all versions of the i3, just the electric or including the REX?
This will not happen for a number of reasons.
1. The price of the i3 is going up.
2. The residual value of the i3 is poor.
3. Updated versions of the Leaf and Volt will cut into sales.

50% Year over year?


They’re not selling water in the dessert, it’s a high priced, high technology vehicle.

Care to place a wager over this?

But it isn’t really fair to compare yearly sales of the vehicles since the i3 and i8 were not available the entire year last year. I think if you were to extrapolate what BMW’s sales would have been if they were available the entire year, you’d find them pretty close to Tesla. I’m just looking at USA sales, of course.

Only problem with this or other articles claiming that Bmw is ahead of Tesla is that they are clearly wrong, since Bmw makes nothing that either compares or competes with the Tesla Model S.

You may be right to a certain extent. In a perfect world where all cars were electric, the Model-S would not be a competitor to the i3 or the i8. However, with limited choices available you can be sure that anyone who bought the i3 or i8 at least gave some thought to a Tesla Model-S.

That’s the exception to the rule. Usually Tesla gets wrongly labeled as “EV sales leader” and “No. 1” in EVs by the media.

Nissan-Renault clearly is the sales leader with over 200k EV s sold as of November 2014:

I don’t know how many times EV press reports and articles got this wrong, even including some automotive journalists.

I think markets are more concerned with revenue, and from that POV Tesla still leads.

It is called a “Troll Site”. They just want the clicks for the ad revenue. They intentionally say something completely incorrect just to make money off of the outrage.

Don’t take the click bait.

Well, I was guessing it was a simple mistake on the part of the writer; investors’ websites are littered with very poorly researched articles about Tesla, full of misinformation.

However, from what Brian Henderson posted above, it seems pretty clear the misinformation was intentional.

“Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. The third time it’s enemy action.” –Ian Fleming, /Goldfinger/