I reported the other day that the Model 3 was the 10th best selling vehicle in Sweden in July. I also reported that the Model 3 was the 9th best selling car in the United States in the second quarter of 2019. Switzerland and Liechtenstein (which report sales together) top them both. The Tesla Model 3 was the 4th best selling vehicle in Switzerland and Liechtenstein in the first half of the year.
We’re not just talking cars here, and we’re not just talking one month. For the first 6 months of 2019, only 3 other passenger vehicles landed in more homes than Tesla’s mass-market model. Those were the Škoda Octavia (don’t ask me how or why that’s #1), the VW Tiguan, and the VW Golf.
Here’s a chart of the top 10 models in January through June:
A couple of matters pop out to me here. First of all, it’s no secret that Switzerland (population of 8.42 million) and Lichtenstein (population 37,810) are rich countries. It’s also no secret that it’s easier for rich people to afford a CHF 44,990 ($46,000) vehicle than non-rich people. Even if the total cost of ownership of a Model 3 is comparable to or beats a Toyota Corolla, you have to have money to buy the premium-class car in the first place — and, as far as I know, no banks take total cost of ownership into account when approving loans.
Switzerland, despite its small geographic size, is also home to 5 Tesla service centers and a ton of Superchargers. Naturally, Tesla placed service centers and Superchargers around the country because it’s been a good market for Tesla, but there’s also a positive feedback loop that leads to many more consumers — a next, bigger wave of tech adopters — feeling comfortable buying a Tesla. This is surely now playing a role in new Tesla vehicle sales in California, Norway, the Netherlands, and Switzerland.
Given the countries’ wealth, it’s not surprising to see that Mercedes has 3 models in the top 10. That’s also a good sign for Tesla. There’s no reason to think this is just a blip in market trends, a glitch. The Model 3 could very well hold onto its #4 spot, or it could climb even higher as more consumers find out about the Model 3’s driver and passenger benefits, low cost, and overall “hot” factor. We’ll see.
If you are interested in buying a Tesla Model 3 (or Model S or X) and need a referral code to get 1,000 miles of free Supercharging, feel free to use ours: http://ts.la/tomasz7234