Tesla Is on Its Way to Being America's Luxury King Again

Photo:  AP (AP)
Photo: AP (AP)

The U.S. Department of Energy thinks that a Tesla Model 3 is a luxury sedan even if you and I don’t, classifying it as such on, and grouping it in with every other luxury marque you’ve heard of. Which means we also must accept a still new-ish truth: That Tesla is the king of luxury in America, and probably will be for some time.

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The latest numbers only reinforce this fact, with Automotive News reporting that not only did Tesla have more new registrations in January than any other luxury marque, it did so handily, beating Mercedes and Lexus combined. Tesla had 49,917 new registrations that month, compared to Mercedes’ 23,345 and Lexus’s 23,082. In second place, meanwhile, was BMW, with 31,070, not even close to the Tesla number.


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From Auto News:

Tesla enjoyed a 34 percent increase in new-vehicle registrations compared with January 2022, while BMW was up 2.5 percent, Mercedes was higher by 7.3 percent, and Lexus was lower by 6.6 percent.

The best-selling Tesla Model Y crossover benefited from a $13,000 price cut in mid-January that was designed to boost demand and absorb production from a new plant in Austin, Texas. The Model Y is also made in Fremont, Calif.

Tesla registrations were also helped by the federal EV tax credit. Prior to Jan. 1, Tesla was not eligible for the tax break because the automaker hit its ceiling of 200,000 credits under the old rules. The new law doesn’t have limits.

Model Y registrations in January surged 56 percent to 28,833 vehicles, Experian data showed. For the Model 3 sedan, which received a smaller price cut, registrations rose 29 percent in January to 17,526.

In fifth place was Audi, with 19,113 registrations; in sixth place was Cadillac, with 13,220; in seventh was Acura, with 10,833; in eighth was Volvo, with 8,664; in ninth was Land Rover, with 7,003; and in tenth was lowly Lincoln, with 6,964 — all for January, in case you were curious about the current pecking order.

Probably all of those marques except Volvo would tell you that, really, they’d like to move a few more cars than that, though probably none of them can realistically aspire to catch Tesla in the near term. This is the bed we’ve made so time to lie in it.

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