The Tesla Model 3 has outsold the Toyota Camry in California last year, scoring a highly symbolic win for the US EV maker.

California is the nation's biggest car market, and the Toyota Camry had been its top seller for many years. Not anymore, though, as the Tesla Model 3 overtook the Toyota Camry in 2022 by a significant amount.

According to data from the California New Car Dealers Association (CNCDA), Tesla delivered 78,934 Model 3 sedans in the Golden State last year, gaining a 15 percent market share among passenger cars.

The Toyota Camry was second at 55,967 registrations with an 11 percent share, followed by the Toyota Corolla at 39,865 registrations. It's worth noting that Tesla Model 3 registrations in California surpassed every other passenger car.

Tesla also beat Toyota in the Golden State in an even more hotly contested segment, that of compact crossover SUVs. The Model Y beat the Toyota RAV4 for the second year in a row with 87,257 registrations versus 59,794 in the light-truck category. 

The Ford F-Series pickups ranked third with 40,232 registrations, which means the Tesla Model Y beat America's best-selling vehicle in California last year.

Gallery: 2022 Tesla Model 3

Toyota remained the state's No. 1 brand last year with a 17 percent share from 289,304 registrations, but Tesla is closing in quickly. The EV maker reached an 11 percent market share from 186,711 registrations.

According to data from the CNCDA, Tesla nearly doubled its market share from 2021 to 2022, while the Toyota brand and its Lexus division lost market share. 

Tesla's evolution in California and its recent price cuts suggest it will overtake Toyota in a year or two, Loren McDonald, CEO of the analysis and consulting firm EVAdoption, told Automotive News. Tesla has already become the top luxury-segment automaker in the US in 2022.

"Tesla buyers today are the historical Honda and Toyota buyers of the past. They're switching over to Model 3s and Model Ys," McDonald noted.

When it comes to EVs, things aren't looking good for Toyota, which only had 622 registrations in California last year for its sole electric vehicle, the bZ4X. That's nothing compared to Tesla's 187,280 registrations across four models. 

And with sales of pure EVs having increased by more than 50 percent in California in 2022, Tesla looks well positioned to significantly increase – or maybe double again – its market share.

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