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Tesla Model 3 Jumps To #2 In France — #CleanTechnica EV Sales Report

The French plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) market recorded 6,136 registrations in March, up 14% year over year (YoY). A big portion of this growth came from the Tesla Model 3, which had 1,153 deliveries last month, the best result ever for a nameplate not called “Renault Zoe.”

The French plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) market recorded 6,136 registrations in March, up 14% year over year (YoY). A big portion of this growth came from the Tesla Model 3, which had 1,153 deliveries last month, the best result ever for a nameplate not called “Renault Zoe.”

This result kept the 2019 PEV share at 2.6%, with fully electric vehicles (BEVs) alone having 1.9% share.

Looking at last month’s best sellers, the Renault Zoe’s sales dropped 32% last month YoY, to 1,536 units. I presume the Peugeot e-208 shadow is starting to be felt. The month’s main news, of course, came in 2nd place, with the Tesla Model 3 reaching 1,153 deliveries.

If those not familiar with this market might feel this is not a disruptive result — after all, the Californian remained below the leader Zoe — note that this event in France would be like the Audi e-tron jumping straight into #2 on the US PEV market. The Zoe is a giant in France, and is thus hard to topple.

Elsewhere, the usual silver medalist Nissan Leaf had to be contented with the last place on the podium, with 455 units delivered. That was its best performance in the last 8 months. The Kia Niro EV was #4, with 299 deliveries, a new personal best.

Another interesting event was the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV reaching the 5th spot, thanks to 258 deliveries, beating this year’s current plug-in hybrid best seller (the Volvo XC60 PHEV, 223 units).

Rank Model March Sales  
1 Renault Zoe 1,536
2 Tesla Model 3 1,153
3 Nissan Leaf 455
4 Kia Niro EV 299
5 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV 258

In a market known for its stability, this time there were a number of changes in the top positions, with the Tesla Model 3 jumping to the runner-up spot, while the Kia Niro EV was up one position, to #5.

The plug-in hybrid (PHEV) race is warming up, as 42 units now separate the #4 Volvo XC60 PHEV and the #6 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV, two midsize SUVs.

Interestingly, the 7 best selling PHEVs are either SUVs or crossovers, while on the BEV side, 8 out of the top 11 models are regular cars.

In the second half of the ranking, both Land Rover yachts SUVs hit record numbers, allowing the Range Rover Sport PHEV to climb one spot, to #11.

Underlining Kia’s good moment in France, the Niro PHEV registered 115 units, its best result in 15 months.

We welcome two new models on the top 20 list as well, although only one of them, the Audi e-Tron, is a fresh face. The other, the BMW 225xe Active Tourer, is a familiar name in this ranking.

In the brand ranking, Renault (29%, down 3%), continues in the leading position, but has lost a significant share of the market, while Tesla (12%) jumped to the 2nd spot, dropping Volvo (9%, down 1%) to #3, and kicking Nissan (8%) off of the podium.

Tesla Model 3 & the ICE competition

Rank Model 2019 sales  
1 Peugeot 508 2,839
2 Mercedes C-Class 2,118
3 Renault Talisman 1,782
4 Tesla Model 3 1,554
5 Mercedes E-Class 1,378

One of the question marks around the Model 3 in Europe regarded the impact that it was going to make on this side of the Atlantic. Will it disrupt the plug-in and petrol/diesel sedan market in the same way that it is doing in the US, or will it be more subdued, because it is playing away from home?

The answer is now being written. Comparing the Model 3’s French deliveries in its second month on the market, the 1,153 deliveries allowed it to beat every competitor in its category, with the #2 Renault Talisman ending the month with 1,020 units.

But looking at the total Q1 registrations, the Tesla Model 3 was only 4th. Although, a podium place in the coming quarters seems not only possible, but likely.

Does the handsome Peugeot 508 have its throne in jeopardy?

Rank France March YTD YTD Share
1 Renault Zoe 1,536 4,229 29%
2 Tesla Model 3 1,153 1,554 11%
3 Nissan Leaf 455 1,122 8%
4 Volvo XC60 PHEV 223 721 5%
5 Kia Niro EV 299 701 5%
6 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV 258 679 5%
7 BMW i3 207 648 4%
8 Smart Fortwo ED 104 497 3%
9 Volvo XC90 PHEV 137 472 3%
10 Mini Countryman PHEV 177 456 3%
11 LR Range Rover Sport PHEV 163 369 3%
12 Hyundai Kona EV 141 367 3%
13 LR Range Rover PHEV 105 229 2%
14 Peugeot iOn 127 228 2%
15 Kia Niro PHEV 115 226 2%
16 Citroen C-Zero 93 175 1%
17 BMW 225xe Act. Tourer 84 162 1%
18 Audi e-tron 140 154 1%
19 VW e-Golf 61 153 1%
20 Hyundai Ioniq PHEV 58 150 1%
+ Others 500 1,214 8%
= TOTAL 6,136 14,506 100%
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Written By

Always interested in the auto industry, particularly in electric cars, Jose has been overviewed the sales evolution of plug-ins on the EV Sales blog, allowing him to gain an expert view on where EVs are right now and where they are headed in the future. The EV Sales blog has become a go-to source for people interested in electric car sales around the world. Extending that work and expertise, Jose is also market analyst on EV-Volumes and works with the European Alternative Fuels Observatory on EV sales matters.


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