The Tesla Model 3 is still the clear leader in the global plug-in electric vehicle market, but Tesla’s Model Y and fellow 2020 newcomer Volkswagen ID.3 are both showing enormous promise.
With more than 260,000 Model 3s sold to the end of October in 2020, Tesla has sold well over 3 times the number of Model 3s than that of French car maker’s Renault Zoe, accounting for 12% of global EV sales.
Including the Model Y, Model S and Model X, and Tesla accounts for 17% of global EV and plug-in hybrid (PHEV) sales combined, followed by Volkswagen at 7% and BMW and China’s BYD at 6%.
But it is the performance of European rival Volkswagen’s ID.3 electric hatch and Tesla’s second “volume” electric vehicle, the Model Y crossover – that is yet to expand into non-US markets – that will be interesting to watch.
Both made it into the top five electric vehicles sold worldwide in October according to figures compiled by José Pontes of EV Sales, and although both sold half that of Chinese SAIC’s Wuling Mini EV, it needs must be remembered that vehicle is only for sale in China, the largest EV market by volume.
The Tesla Model Y pipped the VW ID.3 at the post in th month of October, with both achieving a little more than 10,000 sales according to Pontes.
Still new to the market, the VW ID.3 is yet to enter the global top 20 for year-to-date sales, while the Model Y has now been registered by more than 52,000 drivers in the US.
Sales of the premium Audi e-Tron pushed its ranking to number 7 with 36,264 sales year-to-October, which is being followed closely the GAC Aion S (on sale in China).
In the plug-in hybrid market, it is the Volkswagen Passat PHEV that is the market leader with , followed by the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV with 29,606 vehicles registered.
Even though 2020 closed down automotive industries in the first half of the year, the electric car market is continuing to crack records.
Plug-in electric car registration were up 127% in October, the highest growth in eight years, says Pontes.
With 230,000 battery electric vehicles and 111,000 plug-in hybrid registration in October, the plug-in electric market accounted for 4.9% (3.3% were battery electric) of the global total pulling the year-to-date share to 3.5% (2.4% were battery electric), a full point more than this time in 2020.
While the Coronovirus pandemic is still very much active globally, Pontes says he expects the EV market to continue to defy the slumping petrol and diesel automotive industry.
“The future will depend much on the development of the pandemic and the seriousness of the economic crisis, but whatever happens, expect plugins to weather the storm better than the overall market, increasing its PEV share on the way,” he notes.
This is even more likely given more and more jurisdictions are nailing down dates to ban petrol and diesel vehicles, with the latest being the UK and California by 2030, and new legislation being considered in the European Union to come in line with Norway’s 2025 ban.
Bridie Schmidt is lead reporter for The Driven, sister site of Renew Economy. She specialises in writing about new technology and has been writing about electric vehicles for two years. She has a keen interest in the role that zero emissions transport has to play in sustainability and is co-organiser of the Northern Rivers Electric Vehicle Forum.