Apparently, the UK’s SMMT (Society of Motor Manufacturers & Traders) can’t be bothered to input the Tesla Model 3’s name into their model database. Despite being the 3rd best selling passenger vehicle in the country last month, the Model 3 goes by the name or label “Other” in the top 10 ranking. I guess “no emissions” means you get no name.
In Aug. there were 2082 Model 3 UK registrations.
(On SMMT's top 10 list Model 3 is listed as "other" — they need to update their system)
— Not_an_Analyst (@facts_tesla) September 5, 2019
Interestingly, alongside the Model 3 becoming the third best selling vehicle in the UK, the UK became the best market in Europe* for the Model 3, passing up typical top dogs Norway and the Netherlands. (*Can we still say the UK is in Europe? Was it ever really in Europe? Does Europe even exist? What is the meaning of life and why are we here? Have I gone too far with these questions?)
As in several other markets where the Model 3 is at or near the top of the charts, the Model 3’s neighbors on the list are vehicles with much lower price tags (but maybe a similar 5 year total cost of ownership). Most directly, those are the Volkswagen Golf and Ford Focus. It is often humorous and interesting to see the Model 3 sitting in a ranking between much lower quality, lower tech, and slower cars, but this is what rEVolution looks like. Also, the monthly rankings are not super relevant — until the Model 3 holds onto a top spot across several months, top rankings like this can be attributed to pent-up demand or lopsided shipment patterns. Nonetheless, landing so high on the top selling vehicle list in any month is a big achievement.
Of course, it’s not fair to look at year-to-date sales since the Model 3 just hit the market and we’re well into the second half of the year, but as you can see above, the car is not on the year-to-date top 10 list.
Perhaps the most interesting stat shown above by “Not_an_Analyst” is the one about market share in August. Electric vehicles on the whole jumped in market share from 0.7% in August 2018 to 3.7% in August 2019, with the Model 3 accounting for essentially 3% of the entire British market. That means the car accounted for approximately 1 out of every 33 auto sales in the month!
The Model 3 seems like a good match for the UK. The country has a long history of love for high-quality automobiles, and according to numerous auto experts, nothing tops a modern Tesla. The country is also quite tech savvy, and a Tesla is clearly a “techie car.” Of course, rabid Brexiters who don’t want to buy cars from Audi, BMW, or Mercedes-Benz now have a premium-class alternative, an alternative that wallops their boots in several important ways. Last but not least, many British humans are quite environmentally aware and concerned about the future of society. They know that one of the biggest steps they can take to slow the climate crisis is to go electric for their transportation needs.
Oh yeah, plus, there’s the issue of range. The UK isn’t Curaçao, but most “long trips” on the relatively small island nation are completely covered by a Tesla’s driving range. That is, there may well be no need for charging except on the two ends of the journey (the beginning and ending of the trip). If you happen to be driving from Plymouth to Aberdeen, it’s a different story, but you then have a bunch of Superchargers to help you along the way. Frankly, any fear of taking a road trip in a Tesla should be long gone, but at least in the UK there’s not a persistent dream in consumers’ heads that they might need to take a 2,800 mile cross-country road trip on a whim in which they cannonball it all the way while peeing in plastic cups.
The real kicker, though — one that should soon make the Model 3 the top selling car in the country — is that Tesla CEO Elon Musk is a huge fan of Monty Python.
Yet another Monty Python reference, possibly my favorite https://t.co/kzjh26eIEn
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 24, 2019
This part is true. I was trying to explain that we don’t want our cars to have a “tinny” sound. https://t.co/VxO9rR1uAf
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 13, 2018
Amazingly, in my previous career I actually got paid to say that. Here’s me as “The French Taunter” in “Monty Python’s SPAMALOT” and with @EricIdle at the LA opening. Dreams do come true, kids. 😂 pic.twitter.com/y74LuHQgZX
— David Havasi (@daveydo2000) June 28, 2018
That’s cool. One of my favorite lines! Monty Python is so brilliant.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 28, 2018
Love Monty Python so much
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 8, 2017
In the US, you can ask your Tesla to play any Monty Python (or other comedy) skit. Doesn't work outside US yet.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 8, 2017
How can a true Brit not love a man who so loves Monty Python? And all you have to do to show your support is buy the best mass-market car on the planet.
If you’d like to buy a Tesla and get 1,000 miles (1,500 km) of free Supercharging, feel free to use my referral code: https://ts.la/zachary63404. Or not.