In March, Tesla Left Other Plug-ins In The Dust Globally, Delivering Over 15,000 EVs

White Tesla Model X, Red Model S - Tesla showroom

MAY 2 2017 BY MARK KANE 21

World’s Top 10 Selling Plug-In Cars – 2017 March (data source: EV Sales Blog)

Worldwide plug-in car sales increased in March by roughly 50% to around 91,000, setting the stage for a charge on the all-time record of 103,000 (from December) this Summer.


Tesla Model S and Model X At Tesla’s Fremont factory showroom

With the first quarter now in the books, more than 186,000 plug-in cars have been sold globally, which is 36% more than year ago, and strengthens hope for more than a million sales for the year.

Unrivaled in March (as it often is during the last month of a fiscal quarter) was Tesla, which managed to deliver some 15,824 cars (8,125 S and 7,699 X). That’s enough to be 1st and 2nd in the model rank, and 1st among manufacturers for the month.

The Nissan LEAF‘s advantage from earlier in the year shrank, despite a pretty decent result in March itslef (6,470).  We expect the LEAF to retain the number 1 spot for both April and May, until Tesla takes another pass at the crown in June (another fiscal month-end month – which means big US deliveries).

The Toyota Prius Prime (PHV) set a new high, at about 4,488 sales, which was good for 4th best in March, ahead of 4,044 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV and 3,790 Renault ZOE.

The Chevrolet Bolt EV/Opel Amepera-E is also expected to join the top 10 party later this year as inventory and sales have deepened since April, and deliveries are now getting underway in Norway.

An interesting shuffling has occurred in manufacturers rank, where Volkswagen fell out of top 10. Toyota is now moving up the list fast, and 2016 sales champ – BYD has returned to the list (now 8th) after better results in March.  Look for BYD to once again lead the pack by 2017’s end.

World’s Top 10 Plug-In Car Manufacturers – 2017 March (data source: EV Sales Blog)

Our thanks to EV Sales Blog for tallying up and estimating the individual sales by OEM.

Categories: Nissan, Sales, Tesla

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21 Comments on "In March, Tesla Left Other Plug-ins In The Dust Globally, Delivering Over 15,000 EVs"

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The Renault-Nissan alliance claims 15,742 LEAF’s delivered in 2017 Q1.

Curse of tally global registrations as noted by the country versus corporate sales recaps…always some flux there with the cutoffs/lag.

It would be nice if 100% of the OEMs split out the EV data, but they don’t, so the registration data is the only way to go apples-to-apples

With all due respect to Tesla, to me most surprising news is granny Leaf still kicking global butt when it’s supposed to be on its last legs…

Shows you that a bargain price (together with solid value, of course) can bring in new customers, even in the supposed newest-tech-obsessed EV segment.

Solid cars. 0 issues on later year models. Affordable.

Only lack range and sex appeal.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

They will probably sell a lot more just before LEAF 2.0 comes out by having a clearance on the old model to make room for 2.0.

Well, they have to find people willing to buy one. The Leaf is already really really cheap and others had more problems finding buyers for an aging car.

But Nissan seems to have planned it perfectly. They kept the Leaf just long enough as it is still relevant.

Lookit VW, man, they want to be the biggest EV maker in the WORLD baby, yessiree!

Oh wait… they ain’t even inna top ten?
Press releases don’t count?
They couldn’t beat the LEAF????

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

Zhidou D2, made it in the top 10….. 😛

The stealth eGolf. It drives again by night.
Ruthlessly, I wonder where Ruth is?

VW was knocked out of the top ten like the hot kiss at the end of a wet fist. 🙂

VW/Audi — Still strongly in first place in number of concept EV’s…..


I’m surprised to see BYD so far down on the list; I thought they would easily be #1.

That just shows how big an impact government incentives have on EV sales. When China temporarily suspended the incentives, sales plummeted.

To be fair, a little more happened there than just temporarily removing some incentives. The whole industry was under massive fraud suspicion, with an official investigation against *all* EV manufacturers in China. Many of them practically suspended sales until they were cleared of suspicion.

It this pace holds BMW will sell 50,000 vehicles too.
That’s the second most expensive behind Tesla.

It actually is bad that the best selling EV company is the EV company with the highest priced EV’s. We need more EV sales in lower price ranges. The price distribution is upside-down from what it needs to be for widespread adoption of EV’s.

The Model 3 and a long list of TM3/Bolt competitors can’t come soon enough.

IONIQ: 2018 Model coming soon!
Bug dreams for Leaf 2.0!
Bolt EV & Model 3!

What else did I miss?

A $10,000 fuel tank is a lot easier to hide on a $50-100k lux/performance car than a $20k econobox.

Also, EVs have a power train cost advantage of perhaps 50%. Saving $1000 off a $2000 Econobox power train doesn’t offset much of the battery cost penalty. But saving $7500 off a $15k lux/perf power train makes a real difference.

That’s why EVs sell better at the high end. It’s also a good thing, as car buying is aspirational. You want Electric Drive associated with the most desirable cars, not the least.

That and the fact that rich people can afford these as toys and probably have other vehicles “just in case”.

People buying econo-boxs need them to the the one and only vehicle and don’t have the extra cash up front to exchange for long term value.

Maybe time to look at value of the cars. Comparing one Leaf with one Tesla is not right. You have to sell 5 Leafs or three i3s and so on to reach a Tesla in value.
Model 3 will change the numbers even more.