Tesla Model 3 Sales Demolish Ford Mustang & Dodge Charger Sales

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A little while after I published articles about Tesla’s US 1st quarter sales earlier this month, I discovered that our estimates for foreign sales had been too pessimistic. Sales abroad were much higher in the 1st quarter than we initially thought — most notably, in Europe, South Korea, and China. That meant that US Tesla sales estimates were too high. So, I think for the first time in my history of doing this, I had to pull some sales reports and wait for a bit more data before publishing updates. (Next quarter we will simply wait longer to publish our reports.) Below is an updated article regarding 1st quarter Tesla sales in the US versus 1st quarter sales of the Ford Mustang & Dodge Charger.

Looking at how the Tesla Model 3 compares on lists of the top selling cars in the USA is always a bit odd. The other top selling cars are a class or three below the Model 3. The most comparable vehicles on the list are the iconic Ford Mustang and Dodge Charger, which do not match the Model 3 in several major categories (sometimes by a gigantic margin) but are at least in the “sporty affordable cars” category. That combo is what makes them fairly good sellers — popular enough to make the list of the top 15 best selling cars in the USA.

From time to time, I find it a bit interesting to compare Model 3 sales to Ford Mustang sales, and this time I’m throwing in the Dodge Charger as well. Looking at the first quarter of 2020 in the USA, it turns out the Model 3 outsold each of them by about 50%.

*Note: This is based on official figures from other automakers but an estimate for the Model 3. Tesla only reports global sales, without splitting them out by country or region, and has also started combining Model 3 and Model Y sales/deliveries. Special thanks to EV Volumes and some Tesla Motors Club members for assistance with this.

The Ford Mustang was actually one of the only models that saw its sales increase in Q1 2020 compared to Q1 2019, rising 7%, whereas the Dodge Charger followed the market trend and saw its sales decline, dropping 10%. The Model 3 also saw a slight increase in sales (deliveries) compared to the first quarter of 2019, up 15%.

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Compared to having approximately 4,000 more sales than the Mustang in Q1 2019 and 7,000 more sales than the Charger in Q1 2019, in the first quarter of this year, 2020, the Model 3 had approximately 9,000 more sales than each of these “muscle cars.”

It is logical the Model 3 gets so many more sales. It’s quicker, safer, cleaner, drives better, has more advanced tech, and yet can easily have a similar cost of ownership across a handful of years. In fact, when more Autopilot/Full Self Driving features get implemented and Tesla’s German gigafactory gets built, the Model 3 could see its sales gap with these models increase.

Ford seems to recognize what’s up, and thus created the Mustang Mach-E, which is reportedly a serious effort from the American automaker that tries to bring the popularity and strong inherent advantages and appeal of electric powertrains into its own package. We’ll soon see how well the market accepts that move.

Side note: I made it all the way through this article before realizing how ironic the name “Charger” is in this context.

Want to buy a Tesla Model 3, Model S, or Model X? Feel free to use my referral code to get some free Supercharging miles with your purchase: https://ts.la/zachary63404You can also get a $250 discount on Tesla solar with that code.


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Zachary Shahan

Zach is tryin' to help society help itself one word at a time. He spends most of his time here on CleanTechnica as its director, chief editor, and CEO. Zach is recognized globally as an electric vehicle, solar energy, and energy storage expert. He has presented about cleantech at conferences in India, the UAE, Ukraine, Poland, Germany, the Netherlands, the USA, Canada, and Curaçao. Zach has long-term investments in Tesla [TSLA], NIO [NIO], Xpeng [XPEV], Ford [F], ChargePoint [CHPT], Amazon [AMZN], Piedmont Lithium [PLL], Lithium Americas [LAC], Albemarle Corporation [ALB], Nouveau Monde Graphite [NMGRF], Talon Metals [TLOFF], Arclight Clean Transition Corp [ACTC], and Starbucks [SBUX]. But he does not offer (explicitly or implicitly) investment advice of any sort.

Zachary Shahan has 7369 posts and counting. See all posts by Zachary Shahan