Tesla dominates imported EV sales in South Korea, according to The Korea Bizwire. Even though South Korea has it’s own Korean-made EVs, which are indeed popular, Tesla is all the rage. The Korea Automobile Manufacturers Association and Korea Automobile Importers & Distributors Association reported a 40.1% increase in EV sales between January and April, most of which have come from Tesla.
The data, when compared to the previous year and excluding low-speed EVs and large commercial vehicles, shows that Tesla is leading South Korea’s EV market. Tesla sales have jumped from 236 cars in April of 2019 to 4,075 cars this year. The Model 3 was released in South Korea in 2019 and it’s a compelling mixture of affordable but high quality. It accounts for almost all of Tesla’s sales.
Overall, there have been 4,264 sales of imported electric vehicles. April sales of imported EVs jumped by 660% compared to the year before. The sales breakdown was as follows:
- Tesla: 3,941
- Nissan: 99
- BMW: 53
- Mercedes-Benz: 23
- Jaguar: 14
South Korean manufacturers, meanwhile, sold 10,161 EVs in the first 4 months of 2020, which was 4.4% higher than last year. The Hyundai Kona EV and Kia Niro EV lead the domestic EV market, accounting for 65.6% of EV sales from South Korean manufacturers.
The Korea Bizwire notes that Tesla has fully infiltrated the South Korean market by now and other imported brands are also moving from hybrid/plug-in-hybrid models to fully electric vehicles. Mercedes-Benz is mentioned, for example. It released the EQC400 last year and also recently introduced the Vision EQS — a new concept car — to the public.
Back in December, the Model 3 became the 4th best selling imported car in South Korea within 20 days of its official sales launch in November. This was aided with subsidies that made the cost of the Model 3 low, to the point of $26,000. Tesmanian noted that South Korea is a fairly large market with more than a million vehicles sold annually. In such a large market, you would expect a large number of reservations holders waiting for their cars in the first few months of deliveries to that market, but it appears that — like in other markets — the Tesla Model 3 has strong ongoing demand.
When you have a great product at a price that is competitive, it only makes sense that the vehicle will be the top seller.