The island city-state of Singapore, located in Southeast Asia, is widely regarded as the most expensive place in the world to buy a new car. Taxes and import costs (as well as emissions charges for non-EVs) result in cars typically costing around three to four times as much in Singapore as they would in the US. An entry-level Honda Civic for example retails at the equivalent of $83,000 there.

So, when Tesla entered the Singaporean market earlier this year locals weren’t expecting their cars to be cheap – even if their EV status meant they could dodge all the emissions charges. And they weren’t wrong, with a base Model 3 SR+ costing the equivalent of around $125k after all incentives have been applied and registration fees paid. Fancy a Model 3 Performance, perhaps with a few options? Prepare to fork out over $160,000 after you’ve paid your mandatory Certificate of Entitlement required for all new vehicles in Singapore. Tesla doesn’t sell the Long Range Model 3 in Singapore, meanwhile the Model S, X and Y are also all yet to reach the island.

Despite all the above, Tesla are doing quite well in Singapore. The firm sold 314 cars in September – almost as much as Hyundai. Overall Tesla was the 6th best-selling automaker in Singapore last month.

The Singaporean government has heavily incentivized electric vehicles and offers up to S$45,000 ($33,360) in incentives to help improve EV adoption and to combat all the high taxes as well as the massive COE fee they also charge.

Singapore aims to have 60,000 EV chargers by 2030 – a remarkably high figure given the island has an area of only 281 square miles. The city-state also wants to phase out ICE vehicles by 2040, which they are gradually doing through exorbitant emissions charges, naturally.  

Got a tip for us? Email: