Tesla Sees Strong Sales Growth In Just Two Major Markets In Europe

JUN 13 2018 BY MARK KANE 50

After a weaker first quarter, Tesla finally noted 7% growth for Model S/Model X sales in Western Europe during the first five months of this year.

Tesla Model S

The results are however widely varied because Tesla is doing exceptionally well in Norway (+94% year-over-year) and in the Netherlands (+71%), while in the other big markets for plug-ins sales, Tesla sales decreased substantially.

We are aware that part of the issue could be current allocation of cars for deliveries, but let’s take a look:

  • Austria – down 51%
  • Germany – down 37%
  • Switzerland – down 33%
  • Belgium – down 25%
  • Sweden – down 20%
  • UK – down 14% (est.)
  • France – down 1%

In most of those countries, plug-in electric car sales as a whole went up this year, so seeing Tesla down is not a promising indicator.

As we reported just a few days ago, during the first five months of 2018, Tesla significantly increased its sales in Norway of both the Model S and Model X. Here are those figures:

  • Tesla Model X: 247 in May (up 79%) and 1,548 YTD (up 72%)
  • Tesla Model S: 272 in May (up 209%) and 1,386 YTD (up 127%)

Model S returned back to form, but it’s still below its results from 2014 and 2015 when in the first five months respectively some 2,598 and 2,108 were registered.

Categories: Sales, Tesla

Tags: , , , , , ,

Leave a Reply

50 Comments on "Tesla Sees Strong Sales Growth In Just Two Major Markets In Europe"

newest oldest most voted

And next year it will be zero in the Netherlands because of tax changes.

Thats that why the sales of Tesla will surge this year.

what tax changes?

In 2019 all cars ( incl. ev’s) above € 50.000,- will go to the 22 % additional (tax) liability for company cars instead of the current 4 % . This already happened to the Hybrid cars ( like te formely immense populair mitsubishi outlander phev) and sales have dropped dramatically.

This needs some explanation.
In the Netherlands most cars, especially in the luxury segment, are made available as ‘benefit in kind’ by employers. The tax liability for this benefit in kind is 22% of the sticker price as additional taxable income, mostly in the 52% tax bracket.
At the moment, EV have an exemption and are charged with 4% additional income.
Starting in 2019, the first €50,000 will be charged with 4% and the rest with 22%.
For a Tesla with a price of €100,000 this is an extra €9,000 in income and mostly an extra €4,680 (52%) in tax.

What remains for Tesla is the special sales tax (BPM) exemption, of about ~€8,000 and a yearly €4,680 in lower income tax. Still nothing to sneeze at.

Thanx for explanation.
I will point out that because ppl will undergo a massive buy now, it will mean that come new years, that most ppl that want one, will have bought one already.
So 2019 will be slow, but, 2020 will probably see normal sales.

Maybe people are waiting for the Model 3 and more pricing information about it. 7% growth isn’t really impressive, especially since the Netherlands currently have a end of incentives push. And the whole market is growing 45% (YTD) and since Tesla doesn’t have the same market share as in the US, it is a bit disappointing.

Maybe they should adjust pricing. Prices went up when the Euro went down, but never came down, despite the Euro being up again.

Nissan is doing well with the new Leaf and buyers also waiting for the Model 3.

I do think the Model 3 will be a hit as large cars like the S and the X are challenging in European cities and secondary roads.

Lower price is probably the main reason.. the M3 will sell more. But we’re talking end of 2019.. or later. .

A better size is a pretty damn good reason, I would never buy a battle ship like the S/X. It would be awesome if Tesla would make a Golf-size hatch for Europe one day.

I always wondered how they could make the car look so sleek while not sacrificing interior space, standing in front of one I realized how massive S and X are (by European standards)

It all depends on margins on Model 3. Can Tesla sell Model 3 profitably in Europe? If they can, they will grow, otherwise they will shrink, because Model S and X have peaked and in a few months have to deal with competition from Jaguar and Audi. Next year there will be more competition from Porsche and Mercedes. So it is unrealistic to expect more growth from those models.

Model S and X still have room to grow in China, the big question is after Tesla finishes pulling ahead high end Model 3 sales, can they settle out with a profitable car program long term? And with S and X under pressure from competition, can Tesla Maintain enough demand to support the production system?

I think Model S/X pretty much peaked in all major markets. Once you have new models from other luxury carmakers and Tesla itself (Model 3), it will be very difficult to increase sales of those two model. I think there is demand for Model 3 in the $40-$60k range, and diffidently a lot of demand in the $40k-$50k range. But I don’t think Tesla can make enough profits at $40k-$50k range to invest in new models. They need money for the truck, roadster, Model S/X replacement, gigafactory expansion, etc. A low margin Model 3 won’t be able to support those programs.

Agreed on the peaking, as Tesla is already overachieving with the X and S given that they avg $100k. Most people, including me, didn’t think they could sell that many at that price point (even $100k gas cars don’t hit that sales volume).

But there’s lots of profit to be made on the Model 3 even at $40k, especially since production will be more streamlined by 2019, when Europe shipments commence.

Yup, S and X are just much bigger cars than most in the EU are comfortable driving and can afford to purchase.

“Can Tesla sell Model 3 profitably in Europe?”

A serious question: Is there some reason to think Tesla can’t do that?

Tesla clearly profits selling the MS and MX in Europe, so it seems to me they ought to be able to make a profit on the TM3 also. Sure, the TM3 is a lower profit margin car (or at least Tesla used to say so, even if they’ve claimed otherwise more recently), but you make up in sales volume more than you lose in the percentage on each sale, right? Or at least that’s the rule of thumb.

I am not so sure about that. The more different electric cars on market, the more people will look at them instead of hanging onto ICE cars. Don’t be surprised to see an increase of Tesla sales in the same markets you start seeing the new cars also entering.

Here in Switzerland everybody is waiting for the German EV.
Audi E-Tron, Porsche Taycan, Mercedes EQC and so on.
Swiss people like good quality.

Some Americans like quality too…

In markets where there are strong incentives to buy electric. In markets EVs have to compete with ICEs without help you sadly only reach people like me that want to drive electric and pay extra for that.

“Some Americans like quality too…”

Yes, and that’s why so many Americans have been willing to spend so much more buying a Model S or Model X than they ever have before on a car.

The quality of a Tesla cannot be found in any other car. None other has ever received so many “Best car of the year” reviews, and certainly none has ever gotten so many “Best car ever made” reviews!


That’s strange. I wonder why more than half of Teslas I know had build quality issues in last years…

That is funny and I say that since my sister and her Swiss husband lives in Bern and they tell me that Tesla is and has been the hot large car/suv in Switzerland now for a while and they know dozens of people who put down deposits for the Model 3.

They must not like satisfaction. Tesla beats all of those brands in customer satisfaction.

Weird that you believe people will buy a vehicle with which they will be less satisfied.

Are Europeans less intelligent?

Sure they are satisfied regarding prformance and other e-drive releted benefits. On the other side, build quality wipes their smiles away, for many of them at least.

If i hear about this German quality crap one more time i’ll throw up. After driving ICE Benz for the past 15 years i can tell you for sure i will never buy one again. Expensive to fix and unreliable. I may give evs a shot but as a lease only.

Another Euro point of View

Part of the issue with German premium cars might be a concern to stay on top. It probably has as a side effect a “technical complexity fetish” issue that often leads to unreliability. Arguably their best brands might be the one at the lower end of the market, like Skoda (Czech but part of VW group and made using VW parts) as they benefit from VW vast R&D budget and technical know how but using only components that are well proven and retaining simpler designs. Anyway although far from perfect those cars are often a little more refined as cars that are designed to cruise at 85mph+ will rather expectedly be built at sharper specs than cars designed to cruise routinely around 65mph . If speed on German highways becomes restricted I expect it as likely for this specificity to disappear, meaning that a $20k Golf would become like any other $20k car at 90+mph, a little wobbly and with braking abilities obviously not efficient enough for that kind of speed. Now that level of competence is certainly less and less required and certainly not useful in the US with local stringent speed restrictions.

Without incentives who’s gonna buy that overpriced crap?

Tell that to MB and BMW since the Model S has outsold both of their competing ICE crap S class and 7 series in their home markets of Europe.

Unfortunately for idiots like you their is a thing called data so read and weep trollhttps://global.handelsblatt.com/companies/tesla-model-s-outsells-mercedes-s-class-bmw-7-series-europe-889862

Only in countries with strong EV incentives. Also true for all the smaller EVs.

I said Without incentives!

Jaguar has sold all of the 25k of the first edition i-Pace. So that probably has left a mark on demand for high price EVs.

And so there are no more this year?

From what they made public those cars are stretched out until April. Doesn’t stop anyone from buying one though. Just comes with 9 months of wait, or even more by now.

Tesla cut production of S and X to move workers to the model 3 line. Hard tosell what you don’t build

Model S and X are now produced on a two rather than 3 shift basis – a third increase in productivity.
Also constrained to only 100 000 units this year due to 1865 battery supply from Panasonic Japan.
Should have no difficulty in selling this number, especially with the Chinese market tariff reduction, and increase in Autopilot performance in August.

They shot themselves in the foot with the garbage “quality” of Model S. As much as I like the car, having to replace drive unit three times plus other miscellaneous stuff makes a huge dent to the reputation.

My gas car still has the original engine.

You must be talking about some Model S other than the one Tesla makes. That one comes in #1 in Customer Satisfaction on Consumer Reports‘ survey every year.

But when you said “garbage quality”, perhaps you were talking about your own biased, unfair and unbalanced comment.

Go Tesla!
🙂 🙂 🙂


Yes, demand for the Model S and Model X has peaked in many or most markets. That is precisely why Tesla needs to accelerate the production of Model 3’s as quickly as it can; the market for TM3 is very far from saturated!

But realistically, I think we need to understand that part of the reason why sales of the S/X have actually dropped in certain markets is because there are more choices for PEV (Plug-in EV) buyers to choose from. That’s a very positive thing for car buyers and for the EV revolution, even if it’s not so good for Tesla Inc.’s sales.

Up the EV revolution!

The Model 3 needs a wagon sidekick in Europe fairly soon.
That’s just the way the local market for family sedans works, ev or not.

Oh, and the Jaguar I-Pace is built by Magna [Canadian company, world’s fourth largest automotive supplier] in Austria, so the sharp drop in Tesla sales figures.

Tesla X sales will drop quite a lot in Europe based on what I have heard from current Tesla owners. X will be replaced by e-Tron/MB EQ?/i-Pace as long as they are able to sell their current vehicle at reasonable price.

These are all three cars more suited for the European market.
A lot smaller, about 25% – 40% lower in price and a wide dealer network.

But range and charging have to improve fast, or the surge of these models will be very temporarily.

I read some German newspaper that for example the MB EQ? would have 110 kWh option for battery which should give enough range. I don’t know where they get this info but it seems trustworthy.

It seems that the official pre-release info of these cars are not very accurate. Maybe they don’t want to give too much info to competitors before the release.

Am I right in thinking this is delivery data? If so it would make sense that Tesla is allocating a certain % of cars to the EU and the focusing on specific markets in that region. The Dutch probably because of the tax changes and Norway because they are special. Overall are Tesla x and s manufacturing numbers mostly flat? Or are we seeing fewer made and sold?

The 50% of 10 are 5. The 1% of 1000 are 10. This numbers are relatives.

I see the UK decline as people waiting for Model 3 (like me), or not waiting and buying a Leaf instead. Model S and X are both really expensive to buy, and the real (rich) enthusiasts have probably got Tesla’s already by now.