The Tesla model S has dominated the luxury market in the US its home base for several years but gas-powered premium German cars continued to lead in Europe until now.
The Tesla model X has also done well in its first full year in Europe, selling 12,000 units about the same as the gas-powered Porsche Cayenne and about 2,000 more than the BMW X6.The sales of the model S jumped 30 percent in Europe last year to 16,132. This compares to the Mercedes S class which sold just 3 percent more of its model S class or 13,359 units, and of BMW 7 series which was down 13 percent at 11,735 units. However in Germany alone the luxury German carmakers are still selling more than Tesla.
Tesla broke its delivery record in mid-December last year for Norway and this no doubt helped Norway reach a new 52 percent of electric vehicles being sold during that month. A new passenger car sold in Norway is now more likely to be a plug-in electric than a gas-power car.
Both Tesla's Model S and Model X have many different configurations but all are counted in sales for each model. Although this is also true for comparable German models, the Germans also have other competing models. For example the 6 series of BMW some claim to be comparable also to the Model S sold about 6,000 units last year.
Although the Model S and X are rising to the top of the European luxury segment the numbers may be a bit misleading. Nevertheless it is clear Tesla EVs are making huge gains in Europe.
For years the European luxury automakers have dismissed Tesla brands but now they are preparing to launch rivals instead.
Jaguar is to introduce its first fully electric model the I-Pace on March 1st. Audi will unveil the e-tron Quattro in August. Both these models will compete with Tesla's model X. Porsche is expected to unveil a rival to the model S the Mission E later this year. Volkswagen is also to unveil a concept car that could compete with the Model S,