Electric vehicle sales for 2021 are in as Tesla nudges one million mark

U.S. NTSB Tesla California

EV sales figures for 2021 – both locally and worldwide – are starting to dribble in this month, revealing the increasing acceptance of electric vehicles by drivers.



Tesla, now the world’s most valuable carmaker by market cap and leader in EV sales in many markets, in the early days of January said it had delivered 936,000 electric cars in 2021 – almost double the number in 2020.

With its Shanghai factory now ramped up to full production, and two more EV factories at Berlin, Germany and Austin, Texas to open in 2022, it is showing very little sign of slowing down, even amid pandemic and supply chain challenges.

In Australia, the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI) reported 5,149 electric cars were sold in 2021, a tripling of sales compared to 2020 – at least according to carmakers that share their data with the industry body.



It’s known that Tesla does not report its local sales figures to the FCAI, and this has meant The Driven’s EV sales reporting throughout 2021 has been supplemented with shipping data.

Conservative estimates put Australia’s total EV sales including Tesla for 2021 at 15,000. It is thought that somewhere between 10,000-12,000 Model 3s arrived in Australia in 2021, although any that arrived in December may still be in transit and thus not yet officially recorded as a sale to a customer. The latest ship to arrive in Australia in 2021 with Tesla cars on board arrived on the December 30, for example.

In addition to Tesla, we can reveal that the next most locally sold EV in 2021 was the MG ZS EV, still officially Australia’s cheapest EV and priced below $45,000, drive away.

Chinese company MG sold 1,354 ZS EVs, and this was followed by the Porsche Taycan, which sells from $156,300 before on-roads. There were 531 Taycans registered in 2021 .

Next on the list is the Hyundai Kona EV with 505 sold. The Hyundai Ioniq EV fastback, which sells from just under $55,000 driveaway, also did well with 338 sold, but it narrowly missed beating the premium EQC electric SUV. Mercedes-Benz sold 360 of these in 2021, while it sold 192 smaller EQA compact SUVs.



It is not yet confirmed exactly how many Mini Cooper EVs sold in 2021 but our figures estimate around the 350 mark, while Nissan sold 370 Leafs and Kia sold 217 e-Niros.

Hyundai delivered 172 of the Ioniq 5 since its arrival in September, and the South Korean carmaker says it has more inventory secured.

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