In an unprecedented turn of events, the Tesla Model Y has secured the title of the world’s best-selling car in the first quarter of 2023, surpassing all expectations for electric vehicles (EVs). This significant achievement was confirmed by industry analyst JATO Dynamics, solidifying the Model Y’s remarkable rise to prominence in the automotive market.
Over the past few years, sales of the Model Y have witnessed substantial growth across the globe, positioning the car on a trajectory to claim the top spot as the world’s best-selling vehicle. Tesla had foreseen this accomplishment even before the car’s launch, with expectations of potential demand reaching up to one million units annually.
Initially viewed as an ambitious goal by skeptics, Tesla’s prediction proved to be accurate. Last year, the Model Y emerged as the best-selling vehicle in Europe and California, and despite differing consumer preferences and model availability in China, it secured the fourth spot on the sales chart. Furthermore, the Model Y claimed the third-best selling car worldwide.
Now, Tesla’s projection has become a reality as the Model Y has surpassed the Toyota Corolla to become the world’s best-selling car in the first quarter of this year, with promising prospects for maintaining its position throughout the year.
Analyst Felipe Munoz of JATO Dynamics compiled data for Motor1, revealing that the Model Y achieved 267,200 sales in Q1 across 53 markets. This impressive figure placed it ahead of the Corolla, which achieved 256,400 sales during the same period. Notably, the Model Y also outperformed other popular models like the Hilux, RAV4, and Camry, all from Toyota.
While it remains uncertain whether the Model Y will maintain its leading position for the entire year, its sales have continued to grow, whereas Corolla sales are experiencing a slight downward trend. One key distinction between the two models is that the Model Y represents new technology, whereas the Corolla is a longstanding standard. However, both models were released in a similar timeframe, with the Corolla debuting in 2018 and the Model Y in 2019.
Moreover, Tesla’s substantial price reductions on the Model Y this year have undoubtedly expanded its accessibility, making the car more affordable to a wider range of consumers compared to 2022.
Notably, Model Y sales have already surpassed the previous year’s figures. In 2022, the Model Y achieved 759,000 sales, placing it among the top ten cars globally. With an average quarterly sales rate of 189,000, the Q1 sales for this year represent a significant increase.
If the Model Y maintains its current sales pace or continues to grow throughout the year, it is poised to surpass one million sales by the end of 2023. In the previous year, only the Toyota Corolla achieved this remarkable milestone with 1.12 million units sold. While it may be a close competition, it is highly likely that the Model Y will retain its leading position.
The Model Y’s accomplishment is even more remarkable considering its pricing and availability. Although the Model Y is widely available in the world’s largest markets, the Corolla holds a global presence. JATO’s analysis accounted for all variations of the Corolla model, including the Corolla, Levin, Allion, and Lingshang, across different body styles such as sedan, hatchback, and wagon, to determine its sales figures.
Despite recent price reductions, the Model Y’s starting price of approximately $40,000 (after credits) remains significantly higher than the base-model Corolla priced at $21,000. Higher price points typically limit the addressable market, and while EVs boast lower
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