After being presented as the best-selling car in Iceland and after having contributed to Tesla to become the brand selling the most electric cars in the world, the Model 3 has just known a new title. In California, on its territory of origin, the model has just had a very good first quarter.

According to the data identified by the California New Car Dealers Association, the Tesla Model 3 sold 18,856 copies from the start of the year until March. This number allowed him to climb to the top of the podium of the best-selling models in the state, all categories combined.

In second and third place, the Honda Civic (18,001 units) and the Toyota Camry (17,871 units) are not far behind. The Civic is a longtime bestseller in California. And more widely within the United States, the model has sold 300,000 copies, against 180,000 in 2019 for Tesla.

The fact remains that Tesla is approaching such figures, and its state of origin seems set to contribute to the increase in sales. The first quarter of 2020 and its some 18,856 copies sold are up 9.3% compared to the first quarter of 2019, in a local market down 4.3%.

California VE sales

Electric vehicle sales in California have increased since 2017 © IHS

What about the repercussions of COVID-19?

Due to the time lag between actual sales and registration declarations, the good sales results mentioned here do not take into account the repercussions of the health and economic crisis linked to the COVID-19 epidemic. In an article published by Green Car Reports, it is expected that the first four months of 2020 in California will be impacted by a 24% drop in new vehicle sales.

In France, Tesla could also boast of having achieved 26% growth in March, delivering no less than 1,580 copies of its range during the four weeks. But although the month was impacted by the beginnings of containment and the economic crisis, it was no more and no less than deliveries, with sales completed for some time.

As with other manufacturers, the crisis has certainly contributed to the postponement of Tesla’s Semi, its electric truck project. The brand never mentioned it as such, but its new launch planned for 2021 must have been impacted by these uncertain times. In any case, when it was postponed, the firm still took the opportunity to mention its confidence in growth in production over the next few times, for the rest of the range.

"We expect production of Model Y in Fremont and Model 3 in Shanghai to continue to increase gradually until the second quarter. We are continuing to strengthen the production capacity of the Model Y at Gigafactory Berlin and Gigafactory Shanghai and we are on track to begin deliveries from these two sites in 2021 ” Tesla said in a statement.