The most-popular model outsells all the other EVs put together, and by a wide margin.
The auto industry sold or leased 106,864 full-electric vehicles in the U.S. through the first six months of 2019, according to estimated and announced sales figures charted by our affiliate website InsideEVs.com. That’s a significant increase over the first half of 2018 when 63,752 battery-powered models were delivered to customers.
Much of that boost can be attributed to the skyrocketing popularity of the Tesla Model 3, which on its own accounted for a whopping 63 percent of all full-EV sales. Model 3 sales were more than 7,000 units higher in June than they were in May, and over 11,000 more than they were in April. And that’s despite the federal tax credit for Tesla buyers being slashed in half since January 1 because the company had reached the 200,000-unit sales threshold in 2018. The Model 3’s June sales surge could be attributed at least partially in anticipation of Tesla’s tax credits dropping a second time as part of its phase-out on July 1 to $1,850.
Among individual models, sales of the Chevrolet Bolt EV dropped from 2,166 units in March to just 910 in April when its federal tax credit likewise fell to $3,750. It rebounded in May and June, however, likely buoyed by generous sales incentives. Chevy’s currently offering up to $5,500 cash back or $1,000 cash and zero percent financing for 72 months on its EV through the end of July. Overall, the Bolt’s numbers are about 500 units higher than they were during the first two quarters of 2018, and it’s now outselling the Tesla Model S by a slight margin.
Nissan Leaf sales have been up and down from one month to another this year and have so far dipped by around 650 units over 2018’s numbers. The addition of the longer-range Leaf Plus should help boost its fortunes moving forward.
Among recently introduced electrified rides hitting the market for 2019, the Audi eTron and Jaguar i-Pace luxury crossover EVs made the charts, with the former topping the latter despite being on the market for just the last three months.
We’re featuring the nine most popular EVs so far this year in the above slideshow that have sold at least 1,000 units so far this year, based on InsideEVs.com’s data.
9. Jaguar i-Pace
Sassy and sporty, the Jaguar i-Pace EV SUV registered 1,309 deliveries over the first half of 2019. That’s hardly in Tesla territory, but it’s a reasonably strong showing for a brand-new model in the upper end of the price spectrum from a relatively low-volume brand.
8. Audi e-Tron
Despite only registering sales figures for the last three months, the Audi e-Tron luxury crossover SUV is making its presence felt with 1,835 units delivered. That beats its closest rival, the aforementioned Jaguar i-Pace, despite that model being on the market for the full six-month period.
7. Volkswagen e-Golf
Sales are up so far this year for the Volkswagen e-Golf, with 1,893 delivered to customers over the first half of the year. That’s compared to just 776 during the same period in 2018. It registered its biggest sales at 581 units in March, though that figure slipped to 366 in June.
6. BMW i3
BMW sold 2,207 units of the i3 during the first six months of 2019, with June being its strongest month at 473 delivered. This is down, however, from 3,504 sales through the same period last year. Note that these sales figures include both full-electric i3s and those fitted with the range-extending gasoline engine.
5. Nissan Leaf
Sales of the long-running Nissan Leaf are down slightly on the year, with 6,008 units delivered, compared to 6,659 over the first six months of 2018. March was its biggest month of the year with 1,314 units sold. We expect the addition of the Plus version with a more generous operating range of 226 miles on a charge could help spur sales down the road.
4. Tesla Model S
One of the fastest cars on the planet, sales of the Tesla Model S have been slowing in recent months, being surpassed by its showroom sibling, the Model X SUV and left in the dust by the class-leading Model 3. Still, it accounted for 7,225 units delivered over the last six months, which is not too shabby. March was its strongest month with 2,175 units delivered. However, a year ago at this time Tesla had sold 10,820 Model S sedans, with 3,375 of them in March of 2018.
3. Chevrolet Bolt EV
Sales of the Chevrolet Bolt EV ticked up a bit at 8,281 units during the first six months of 2018 despite its federal tax credit being cut from $7,500 to $3,750 on April 1. It’s worst sales month was, in fact, April, though sales have since rebounded as Chevy responded with generous cash rebates and cut-rate financing offers. By comparison, 7,858 Bolt EVs were sold during January-June 2018.
2. Tesla Model X
With sport-utility vehicle sales surging, the Tesla Model X now outsells its showroom sibling, the Model S sedan, with 9,000 units delivered so far this year. March and June were its strongest months. This year’s tally is actually down slightly from 9,525 units delivered to customers during the first six months of 2018. Tesla’s federal tax credit being cut in half on January 1 probably didn’t do the Model X any favors.
1. Tesla Model 3
Tesla delivered a stunning 67,650 units of the compact Model 3 sedan through the first six months of 2019, compared to 24,367 during the same period in 2018. An impressive 21,225 Model 3s were sold in June alone. It likely helped that the federal tax credit granted to Tesla buyers was scheduled to drop to $1,850 on July 1. Still, the Model 3 outsold the EV in the number two spot, the Tesla Model X, by 58,650 units. At that, we expect Tesla’s upcoming Model Y crossover SUV could well surpass even these lofty numbers.