During the fourth quarter of 2023, Tesla achieved new quarterly records for global electric vehicle production and sales, which contributed to the best year ever in terms of volume.

However, there are many challenges as the recent result reveals a slower year-over-year growth rate, as well as serious competition in the form of the surging BYD.

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Tesla was the largest BEV player in 2023, but BYD is catching up

Tesla remains the world's largest all-electric car manufacturer with more than 1.8 million units delivered in 2023 and close to 5.5 million cumulatively. However, BYD was able to deliver more BEVs than Tesla in Q4, which suggests tough competition in 2024 and beyond.

In this post, we will take a look at the numbers and charts to visualize the progress and to better understand what is happening and what to expect in the near future.

Results Q4 2023

In Q4, Tesla's global electric car production amounted to 494,989, which is 13% more than a year ago.

As usual, the lion's share (over 96%) fell on the Model 3/Model Y duo - 476,777 (up 14% year-over-year). It almost looks like Tesla is a Model 3/Model Y-only company.

The share of the Model S/Model X duo is so low that Tesla has decided to stop reporting its sales separately, and started to group "other models" together, which means also the Tesla Cybertruck, which entered the market on November 30, 2023. The switch to a different way of reporting results might also be related to the expected fall in the Model S/Model X results, which would be hidden in the new category, thanks to the growing Cybertruck volume.

Production of "other models" (the Model S, Model X, Cybertruck, and potentially even the Semi) amounted to 18,212 (down 12% year-over-year).

The total global deliveries amounted to 484,507 (up 20% year-over-year). In terms of the two vehicle groups, the Model 3/Model Y duo noted 461,538 deliveries (up 19% year-over-year), while the "other models" noted 22,969 deliveries (up 34% year-over-year).

Tesla Q4'2023 results (YOY change):

  • Total production: 494,989 (up 13%)
    • Model 3/Y production: 476,777 (up 14%)
    • Other models production: 18,212 (down 12%)
  • Total deliveries: 484,507 (up 20%)
    • Model 3/Y deliveries: 461,538 (up 19%)
    • Other model deliveries: 22,969 (up 34%)

* We are not entirely sure whether the "Other models" category includes the Tesla Semi electric truck, whose numbers never were reported separately.

Results Q1-Q4 2023

In 2023, Tesla produced over 1.84 million electric vehicles globally and delivered over 1.8 million electric vehicles to customers.

Production increased by 35% year-over-year, while deliveries noted a 38% increase.

Tesla Q1-Q4'2023 results (YOY change):

  • Total production: 1,845,985 (up 35%)
    • Model 3/Y production: 1,775,159 (up 37%)
    • Other models production: 70,826 (down 0.5%)
  • Total deliveries: 1,808,581 (up 38%)
    • Model 3/Y deliveries: 1,739,707 (up 39%)
    • Other model deliveries: 68,874 (up 3%)

For reference, in 2022, Tesla produced 1,369,611 electric cars (up 47% year-over-year) and delivered 1,313,851 (up 40% year-over-year).

While the overall results are positive, the average rate of year-over-year growth has slowed down and is now noticeably behind the long-term target of 50%.

This is especially concerning when we look at Q4, which had the lowest year-over-year growth rate—production up by 13% and deliveries up by 20%—in a long time (since Q2 2020 and during the COVID lockdowns), despite multiple rounds of significant price reduction applied in 2023.


Total deliveries

Deliveries by model

A few months ago, Tesla produced its five millionth electric car. As of the end of the fourth quarter, the cumulative deliveries exceeded 5.45 million units, including over 4.78 million Model 3/Model Y.

Total production

Production by model

During the past four quarters, Tesla produced and delivered more than 1.8 million electric vehicles, meeting its 1.8 million vehicle target in 2023 (compared to 1.3 million units in 2022).

Tesla's long-term goal is to increase sales by about 50 percent year-over-year, which would suggest a necessity to reach 2.7 million units in 2024.

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