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Tesla Model 3 vs. US Incumbents – Gun In A Knife Fight or Fair Fight?


Published on March 18, 2019 |
by Vijay Govindan

March 18, 2019 by Vijay Govindan

I recently run a Twitter poll to decide what to write about the next. The top article that voters asked me to write was an article on how the Tesla Model Standard Range (SR) competes against models from existing car manufacturers. The wonderful thing is that Tesla is now competitive, without incentives. It is very competitive with a total cost of ownership, even with cars far below its class. With incentive and TCO billed, Model 3 is hard to beat.

Let's take a look.

The Tesla Model 3 Standard Range has a price of $ 35,000, before incentives, gas savings or maintenance savings. Based on a Green Car Reports poll the Standard Range or Standard Range Plus is what 44% of Tesla Model 3 buyers would buy.

# 1 Best-selling car in the United States (2018) – Toyota Camry

From toyota.com it is the most expensive inventory Camry I could find in zip code 90210. (Not my postal code – I thought it was fun. I used the same zip code for all cars and found the highest class vehicle for Each of these models.) Some of these high quality buyers will refer to the SR or higher trimmer.

Although it is a more expensive vehicle, Camry has a metal roof instead of glass, is slower and is less secure.

This is the most expensive fixture in Camry Hybrid that I found. Hybrids still suffer from the disadvantages of gas engines (such as higher maintenance) and higher cash prices than their gasoline petrol versions. It is just a compromise that is no longer meaningful. I expect niche hybrid buyers to favor Teslas or other fully electric cars ahead.

# 4 Best selling car in the US (2018) – Honda Accord

Again, the most expensive Accord (a hybrid in this case) is just below the SR price. Furthermore, with California and federal incentives, SR is well below $ 30,000.

# 6 Best-selling car in the US (2018) – Nissan Altima

Ditto for Altima. Retail prices vary. Tesla online prices do not come.

Nissan Maxima

Maxima is aimed at the higher part of midsize since the market. It is entirely in view of the model 3 trimmer. A long, long series?

What does Maxima actually offer that would get someone to choose it over a Model 3 Long Range?

Nissan LEAF

I expect new LEAF sales to work well, especially in Europe. The 60 kWh version is expected to be $ 5,500 more than the base 40 kWh version. This car is eligible for the entire $ 7,500 federal tax credit and government incentives. The lower price plus the large Nissan dealer network can convince some buyers to go this route. Some of the staff CleanTechnica have the magazine. But Model 3 has significantly faster acceleration, advanced navigation, Easter eggs, a glass roof, Supercharging and more cachet.

# 8 Best Selling Car in the United States (2018) – Ford Fusion

Ford Fusion was the 8th best-selling car in the United States in 2018, according to CleanTechnica. This car is now discounted $ 4,000 from MSRP, probably because it ceases. As such, this is near the Model 3 SR. The above model is the plug-in hybrid version of Fusion Energy.

# 9 Best-selling car in the US (2018) – Chevy Malibu

Model 3 SR is competitive with the top end of the Chevrolet Malibu. What would you buy?

# 12 Best-selling car in the US (2018) – Hyundai Sonata

Hyundai Sonata was # 12 on the 2018 bestselling car list. Model 3 Mid Range / Long Range was # 11. The Standard Range is now priced competitively with Sonata.

Here is one of the shortcomings of the reseller model. If I wanted this Sonata Hybrid it would be nearly 35 miles from my zip. The closest I could see was 17 miles away for a similar vehicle. Tesla's online sales model and home delivery sound better to me.

I continue to believe that the plug-in hybrid market will be fully electric (BEV) faster than the pure hybrid market. My hope is that as manufacturers see the demand for BEV, they rapidly increase the supply of their own BEVs. It's better for all of us.

You can argue, and I would not be convinced that model 3 has luxury car prices and should be compared to luxury competition. The reason I disagree is Tesla's Q4 2018 Shareholder Letter, where former owners come to model 3 from a wide range of sources, such as medium-sized cars, hybrids and the luxury market. Cannibalization of Tesla S and X vehicles was very minimal. That's when the car had average sales prices close to $ 55,000! Now the car is 36% cheaper, with a starting price of $ 35,000. Demand is increasing considerably, and can lead to even cheaper cars being traded for model 3.

To show that SR is competitive with luxury cars, let's show the cheapest luxury pump for the following vehicles.

# 20 Best-selling car in the US (2018), # 2 Small or medium-sized luxury car in the United States (2018) – Mercedes-Benz C / CLA-Klass

The Mercedes C / CLA class was # 20 on our list of best-selling cars for 2018 and # 2 on our little + midsize luxury car. It was the only luxury car, with the exception of model 3, to make the list of 2018 cars the best seller. SR is spot on in price with the CLA 250 Coupe. Meanwhile, the C300 is much more expensive.

# 3 Luxury or small luxury car in the United States (2018) – Mercedes-Benz E-Klass

Mercedes E-Class was # 3 on our list of luxury cars. This is considerably more expensive than SR. A buyer within this range can compare the E-class with model 3 long-lasting or performance variants.

# 4 Small or medium-sized luxury car in the United States (2018) – Lexus ES

Lexus ES is # 4 on our 2018 list of luxury cars. The lowest I could find was around $ 41,000 to $ 43,000. Lexus is known for its quiet driving and high reliability. Model 3, due to its electrical nature, is super quiet. It also beats the Lexus fuel economy by far. I'm sure some prefer Lexus for their luxurious finishes. Others can venture out and buy their first high-tech luxury Tesla.

# 5 Luxury or small luxury car in the United States (2018) – BMW 3 Series

Finally, the iconic BMW 3 series tops # 5 on our luxury bill. Remember that # 1 was the Model 3 Long Range and Mid Range. Since the end of 2018, Long Range has undergone significant price reductions.

The BMW 3 Series was the benchmark that Tesla would beat. For decades, the BMW 3 Series was the car with the best driving characteristics. Many now praise Model 3 for being unrivaled in driving quality.

The lowest prices 330i I could find were close to $ 43,000. It would correspond to model 3 LR. If the LR hit the 3-series at a higher price, we can imagine the carnage now that LR is the same price.

I leave you with these two charts of all the challengers on the small + midsize luxury class market. The first one shows each luxury car as a percentage of the model 3 SR cost. We can see that model 3 SR is very close or below all top competitors.

In the next chart we see each car putting its market share to the previous car. We can see the sudden jump with model 3. Keep in mind that it was with a more expensive model last year. At $ 35,000, the Model 3 SR has an additional 71% potential market available for cars that are priced much higher (but have poorer performance). This is extraordinary and points to the continued success of model 3 in the Luxury Midsize segment.

For the trolls concerned, financial analysts and hostile journalists worried about the requirement for model 3 in the US, Europe, China and beyond, listening to my words: Model 3 sales will continue to surprise and pamper the current auto operators. The demand for all model 3 trimmer will flow steadily higher. Every factory Tesla builds becomes more efficient than the last one. Every new vehicle that Tesla introduces will target large, fat, existing profit centers. Are you ready to move?

Tesla takes a gun at a knife fight. It won't be sweet.

tags: BMW, BMW 3 series, Chevy Malibu, Daimler, EV sales, Ford, Ford Fusion, GM, Honda, Honda Accord, Hyundai, Hyundai Sonata, Lexus, Lexus ES, Lexus ES Hybrid, Mercedes, Mercedes-Benz C-Class, Mercedes-Benz CLA class, Mercedes-Benz E-Class, Nissan, Nissan Altima, Nissan blade, Nissan Maxima, Tesla, Tesla Model 3, Tesla sale, Toyota, Toyota Camry


Vijay Govindan Vijay Govindan is interested in sustainable living, financial education and the intersection of astrophysics and climate change. Rick and Morty fan. Follow him on twitter @ vgovindan17

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