The Tesla Model 3 Is One of the Best Selling Cars on Earth

Global sales data for 2020 is in, and the Tesla Model 3 dominates. The EV is of the 20 best-selling cars on the market. Since its introduction to the market in 2017, the Model 3 has swept sales. This record-breaking EV is one of the best-selling and most satisfying-to-own vehicles in a segment poised to blow up even more. The Model 3 isn’t finished establishing its place in automotive history.

The Tesla Model 3 in Shanghai store
Model 3 vehicle is in flagship store in Shanghai, China. | Gao Yuwen/VCG via Getty Images

Global sales figures provide industry insights

Automotive market analysis and consulting firm Focus2Move complied all available sales data for 2020. The data paints an interesting image of one of the most volatile sales years in automotive sales. The Toyota Corolla, typically a leader in global sales, fell 10%. The Toyota RAV4 grew in sales by 4.5%, one of three brands in the top 20 to demonstrate growth.

In an interesting upset, the Honda HR-V has overtaken the Honda Civic, which saw a 15% drop in sales. This drop pushed the Honda Civic from its position as the third most popular vehicle to fourth. Nissan and Volkswagen join Toyota and Honda in the top 10.

The Tesla Model 3 is a favorite worldwide

A white Tesla Model 3
Tesla Model 3 | Smith Collection/Gado via Getty Images

RELATED: ‘Otherworldly’ Tesla Model 3 Electrifies Consumer Reports in Top 10 of 2021

The Tesla brand is no stranger to breaking records. In 2017 the brand broke two-speed records on the same day. The EV maker produces the fastest electric vehicles on the market. Sales numbers have blown through expectations even during periods of marked market instability. In the first quarter of 2021, the company reported record profits while other automakers saw losses.

Not all records broken by Tesla have been net positives for the brand. In March 2021, the brand’s stock plummeted 36% in six weeks. Individual shares dropped in value from $883 to $566, costing investors billions. No company had taken a loss of that magnitude in the history of public equity trading.

Globally, the Model 3 is the 16th best-selling vehicle. In 2020 Tesla sold 439,760 Model 3s to earn that rank in the worldwide automotive market. Becoming one of the most popular vehicles on earth is the latest popularity contest the EV has won. Tesla has sold more than 800,000 Model 3s, making it the best-selling EV of all time. The Model Y will hit European markets by 2022. Model Y sales could follow a similar trajectory into the top 20.

The Model 3 isn’t the only EV coming out on top

A red Tesla Model 3 EV on dispaly
Tesla Model 3 | Frederic J. Brown/AFP via Getty Images

RELATED: Tesla Makes the Most-Loved Luxury Cars

EVs are the fastest growing market segment by a landslide. Overall EV and hybrid registrations in Europe went up by over 147% in 2020. While car sales overall were down 16% for the year, EV sales jumped over 40%. Figures rose 140% in the first quarter of 2020 alone.

These numbers represent colossal amounts of money from consumers and governments alike. Global government spending on EV subsidies has dropped 50% over the last 5 years. In 2015 subsidies totaled around $25 billion. 2020 saw $13 billion in government EV spending.

Globally, consumers spent around $120 billion on EVs in 2020, while governments forked out around $13 billion in subsidies, equivalent to around 10% of total spending, down from 20% of total spending in 2015. Sales will only continue to rise as EV technology improves and prices begin to lower.