The Tesla Model Y was Europe’s best-selling premium midsize SUV in the first half of the year, beating German rivals including the Mercedes-Benz GLC and BMW X3.
Since its gradual rollout across Europe started last year, Tesla’s electric SUV has been rising up the sales rankings, becoming Norway’s overall top-seller in the first six months, topping Sweden’s sales charts in June and finishing No. 2 overall in the UK in June.
Actually, Model Y sales in Europe are growing so fast that the EV could potentially surpass the Audi A3 to become the continent’s best-selling premium model outright, according to preliminary half-year figures from Dataforce seen by Automotive News Europe.
Tesla sold 41,851 Model Ys in Europe (excluding Finland and Portugal) in the first six months of the year, beating the Mercedes-Benz GLC (40,554) and BMW X3 (31,138). The second best-selling midsize premium SUV with all-electric propulsion was the Audi Q4 e-tron (11,182), ranked seventh overall. Almost half of all EV sales in the segment came from the Model Y, while Audi’s combined EV volume of 30,612 units, led by the Q4 e-tron and e-tron, accounted for a third.
If Tesla Model Y sales keep growing at the current rate, the electric SUV could become Europe’s best-selling premium car in 2022, regardless of powertrain type, beating the Audi A3 which sold 51,994 units in the first half of the year. Audi’s compact premium car posted sales decline in the first half.
Tesla’s ability to increase sales of the Model Y in the second half of the year will depend both on customer demand and its industrial capacity. The US company is slowly ramping production at its new Berlin plant for the Model Y, with CEO Elon Musk promising in July’s earnings call to raise the factory’s weekly output from 1,000 in June to 5,000 vehicles “by the end of this year or early next year.”
He also promised that Giga Berlin would build 10,000 vehicles a week by the end of 2023 as Tesla targets an annual production of 500,000 cars at its German plant.
Currently, the Berlin facility builds Performance versions of the Model Y, while standard dual-motor models are shipped from Tesla‘s Shanghai plant, according to information seen by analyst Matthias Schmidt. Some 20 percent of Model Y sales in Europe come from Berlin and 80 percent from Shanghai, Schmidt said.