Almost Every Brand Except Tesla Is Selling More EVs

Laurance Yap
July 4, 2024
Electric cars continue to sell in greater numbers than ever. Almost every brand selling EVs experienced massive growth in the first quarter of 2024. Tesla’s sales, however, took a step back. We take a look at the state of the industry.
Ariel view of electric cars

EV Sales Continue to Grow in 2024

Throughout the first half of 2024, headlines about electric cars have been dominated by stories of slowing demand and EVs languishing on car dealer lots. Well-publicized studies polling potential car buyers continue to highlight that vehicle affordability, and perceived charging network challenges, continue to present obstacles to EV adoption. But, despite all that, vehicle registration data from S&P Global Mobility shows that EV sales in the U.S. continued to grow – and that almost every brand except for Tesla showed significant sales growth in the first few months of the year.

Indeed, in March 2024, over 96,000 new EVs were registered across the country, a 4 percent rise compared to the same period last year. While EV sales growth has indeed slowed – growth between 2022 and 2023 was over 50 percent – electric cars continue to be delivered, and represent a higher share of new vehicle sales. More interesting, setting aside one brand, Tesla, EV sales are actually growing at a more significant rate than it might seem like on paper.

Top Brands Continue to Grow EV Sales

Tesla aside, electric car sales registrations in March were actually up 28 percent year-over-year, reaching almost 46,000 units in the U.S. Year-to-date, almost 264,000 new electric cars were registered, representing just under 7 percent market share. Other than Tesla and Volkswagen, almost every brand selling EVs noted significant sales increases in the first quarter of 2024:

  1. Tesla: 135,928 units year to date, down 8.6%
  2. Ford: 21,507 units year to date, up a whopping 60%
  3. Hyundai: 13,654 units year to date, up 79%
  4. BMW: 11,369 units year to date, up 66%
  5. Kia: 11,239 units year to date, up 85%
  6. Rivian: 10,632 units, up 30%
  7. Mercedes-Benz: 9,822 units, up 54%
  8. Chevrolet: 9,119 units, up 56%
  9. Volkswagen: 6,585 units, down 32%
  10. Cadillac: 5,939 units
outside shot of a Tesla store

What Happened to Tesla Sales?

The overall sales picture for electric cars has always been driven by Tesla, which until recently, represented the majority of EV sales in the U.S. Indeed, not even two years ago, close to three-quarters of electric cars sold in the U.S. have been Teslas. But as other manufacturers have entered the EV game, Tesla’s dominance has waned, and its market share has been declining steadily over the last 18 months. And while the company is still the EV sales leaders, Tesla now only represents 51.5 percent of EV sales in the U.S.

Despite having dropped prices multiple times through 2023, Tesla’s sales have dropped. Most of its lineup, except for the all-new, but limited-production Cybertruck, is aging, with competitors offering fresher designs and formats. The Model 3 sedan, Tesla’s second best-selling model, also took a short sales hiatus at the beginning of the year as Tesla tooled up to start building the revised 2024 model, which is more efficient, faster, and has refreshed styling. Expect its sales to bounce back in the next couple of months as Tesla ramps up production.

EV Charging Infrastructure

Perhaps most importantly, one of the major reasons people bought Teslas, its excellent network of Superchargers, is starting to become accessible to drivers of EVs from other brands. Ford and Rivian were the first to sign agreements with Tesla to provide their drivers access to Superchargers with an adapter, and almost every other manufacturer has followed.

Indeed, by the end of 2025, almost every brand of EV will be able to plug into a Tesla Supercharger, and almost all manufacturers have committed to adopting the Tesla-style charging port as well.

EV charging infrastructure across the U.S. continues to improve – with some hiccups – for drivers of other EVs as well, with companies like Ionna committing to opening tens of thousands of high-speed chargers over the next few years. Drivers no longer need a Tesla to be sure they will have convenient, easy access to high-speed charging on road trips.

What Is the Future of EV Sales?

Despite continually improving sales from most brands, it’s clear that the transition to electric driving has entered a new phase in North America. Early adopters, willing to put up with some of the quirks of ownership of early EV models, have largely had their needs satisfied. These customers were willing to pay more for an electric vehicle and perhaps put up with less range than a gasoline vehicle, or longer refueling times, to drive a car with the latest tech, high performance, and zero emissions.

In the next phase of the electric transition, the industry needs to reach mainstream buyers, who won’t be willing to accept these compromises. Not only do they want long range and fast charging speeds; mainstream buyers also won’t be willing to pay a premium for an EV even if the fueling and maintenance costs are lower. Fortunately, the sales data shows that mainstream buyers are willing to go electric at the right price – Ford’s sales took off after it cut prices of the F-150 Lightning and Mustang Mach-E by thousands of dollars.

Fortunately, there are a number of new mainstream electric cars on the horizon, vehicles like the Kia EV3, the Mini Aceman, and even the rumored Tesla Model 2, which should address the needs of mainstream buyers at an affordable price point. Vehicles like these, and many more besides, should mean that the momentum towards zero-emissions driving continues to build.

Front view of a Tesla Model 3 driving through canyon roads

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