As the saying goes, “the only constant in this world is change.” The Tesla Model 3 was once king of the hill in the EV world. Even for years before the first Model 3 was produced, demand for the model was through the roof and the car shattered records for reservations of a product (in terms of total value). Once it was finally produced and “production hell” challenges were worked out in order to ramp up production to the necessary high-volume levels, sales exploded and there was exciting news about how well it was doing almost every day. It rose to the top of markets — not just EV markets, but some countries’ auto markets at times. Back in those days, it was hard to imagine any electric vehicle competing with the Model 3. But there was one model that we knew would compete — the Tesla Model Y.
It seems that small SUVs/crossovers are the hottest vehicles in market after market. Many people like to sit a little higher, have a little easier ingress and egress, and have a bit more space in the trunk. So, I think almost everyone expected from the beginning that the Model Y would outsell the Model 3. And it has. In fact, the Model Y has risen to becoming the top selling vehicle in the world. But let’s look into the details of Model 3 versus Model Y sales.
According to focus2move, Tesla Model Y’s sales total in the first 4 months of the year increased 77.2% year over year. It had 336,753 unit sales in 2023. The second best selling model was the Toyota Corolla at 325,984. The Tesla Model 3 was way down below at 180,839 miles. According to that data, the Model Y is seeing almost twice as many sales as the Model 3.
Troy Teslike has a somewhat different estimate. Looking at the 1st quarter of 2023, he estimated 125,826 Model 3 registrations, and the Model Y much higher at 286,354.
Tesla doesn't release Model 3 and Model Y delivery numbers separately but here is my calculation based on available data.
In Q2, Model Y sales worldwide are expected to be around 300K. Q2 is very similar to Q1, but just a little higher. pic.twitter.com/qPF1KleNoW
— Troy Teslike (@TroyTeslike) June 19, 2023
In this case, the Model Y is seeing far more than twice the number of sales as the Model 3.
If you look long term, you see the Model 3 being quite steady or stagnant since the 3rd quarter of 2020, whereas you see the Model Y on an almost continuous, steady rise.
But that’s the past, what about the future? Are we going to see the Model Y continue to climb the sales hill? Or is it done climbing and ready to simply be steady like the Model 3? Will the 3 rise again? Or does it risk dropping in sales? Are both models going to go on an upward or downward sales trend?
Keeping in mind that a Model 3 refresh is coming soon, we still have to admit that we have no clue. But let us know your thoughts down in the comments below. My concern is that Model Y sales will level off while Model 3 sales will go on a downward slide, only bumped up for 2–3 quarters when the new version comes out.
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