The Elon Musk-led company is becoming one of the most popular names in the automotive world. Its cars look cool and boast cutting-edge technology. But do Tesla’s sales put the EV maker in the big leagues with manufacturers like Toyota and Honda?
Tesla sales: Past vs. present
Tesla is by far the leader in electric vehicles. And according to Statista, the EV manufacturer’s global delivery reached over 500,000 in 2020. That’s a pretty big jump from sales of Tesla’s first car, the Roadster, released in 2008. And according to Business Insider, only about 2,400 were sold over the few years it was available. Beginning in 2013, after the Model S debuted, sales quickly jumped. And in 2018, sales had almost doubled after Tesla’s first truly affordable car, the Model 3, launched.
Model 3 sales have eclipsed those of the Model S and the Model X. More than 440,000 Model 3 vehicles delivered in 2020. And only around 57,000 Model S and Model X vehicles combined delivered that year. With the 2021 Model 3’s upgrades and value, sales should only increase this year.
Tesla is improving, but has it reached the big leagues?
Though Tesla has increased production and delivery in the past few years, it still has plenty of catching up to do. For example, Toyota sold 10.6 million vehicles worldwide in 2019, Statista reports. And Honda’s global sales hit a whopping 19.3 million that year.
Then there’s American manufacturer Ford. According to Statista, the Blue Oval automaker sold about 5.4 million vehicles globally in 2019. And more than 2 million vehicles sold in the U.S. that year. But Toyota is giving Ford a run for its money stateside, particularly with the Highlander, whose sales nearly matched those of the Ford Expedition last year.
Can it be the world’s most dominant automaker?
With the increasing demand for EVs, Tesla could easily become a dominant automaker. It recently announced that Model Y production in Shanghai is underway and that deliveries have officially begun. This, along with the manufacturing plant being built in Berlin, Germany, will help the EV maker ramp up delivery and production necessary to match Toyota’s and Honda’s. Globally, Toyota operates 67 manufacturing plants, Honda 13, and Tesla three, with two more scheduled to open in 2021.
Tesla has a long road to becoming a dominant automaker, but it’s on the right track. Opening more plants will allow Tesla to match the demand for electric vehicles and boost production and sales. And all the fun extras you can get with a Tesla car should help further distinguish the brand and add to its mass appeal.