Tesla Sells 33% More Cars In USA In Q4 2018 Than In All Of 2017! 367% YoY Growth!

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2018 has been a real breakout year for Tesla. It has gone from being a niche producer of electric vehicles (EVs) to becoming the dominant seller of not just EVs, but of all luxury cars too.

The surprise to many is that Tesla also dominated the overall sedan market by having the top selling car in the US in terms of revenue!

In a flat year for vehicle sales and with most manufacturers giving up on trying to sell cars in the US, Tesla didn’t just have a good year — it had a blowout, breakout year!

Tesla announced this morning that it sold 90,700 vehicles in the fourth quarter. Although this disappointed short-term oriented Wall Street, those looking back on the progress of the last year can’t help but be impressed by what Tesla has been able to accomplish in a flat vehicle market and a horrible car market (2 of the 3 vehicles Tesla sells are cars).

As you can see in the table above, Tesla sold 33% more vehicles in the US in the 4th quarter than it did in all of 2017!

If you compare the 4th quarter of 2018 to the 4th quarter of 2017, Model S sales increased 1%, Model X sales increased 12%, and Model 3 sales increased a mind-boggling 3,808% — when Tesla was having trouble ramping production to meet the unprecedented demand for Model 3.

Overall, Tesla volume has increased 367% in the last year, putting a tremendous strain on almost all parts of the company. Ordering parts, battery pack manufacturing, final assembly, painting, shipping to the customer, financing, trade-ins, preparing contracts, delivery and service — all have had to grow to support a volume almost 5 times as large as the year-end push the company achieved last year.

Luckily for the company, most of the growth happened before the 4th quarter and things were running relatively smoothly, even on the last day of the year. I visited the sales and delivery center in Tampa and saw none of the chaos that I saw at the end of the 3rd quarter.

Update: Note that the title and a couple of lines in the article have been updated to correct errors.

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Paul Fosse

I have been a software engineer for over 30 years, first developing EDI software, then developing data warehouse systems. Along the way, I've also had the chance to help start a software consulting firm and do portfolio management. In 2010, I took an interest in electric cars because gas was getting expensive. In 2015, I started reading CleanTechnica and took an interest in solar, mainly because it was a threat to my oil and gas investments. Follow me on Twitter @atj721 Tesla investor. Tesla referral code: https://ts.la/paul92237

Paul Fosse has 232 posts and counting. See all posts by Paul Fosse