Tesla Close To Dethroning Toyota In California Sales Race

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The Model 3 outsold the Camry last year by a considerable margin.

Toyota's time at the top of the California sales chart may soon end, reports Automotive News.

While the Toyota Camry was the best-selling vehicle in the state in 2021, the ubiquitous sedan was dethroned by the Tesla Model 3 and Model Y last year.

According to the California New Car Dealers Association, Model 3 sales surpassed all passenger vehicles sold last year. The Model Y also beat the Toyota RAV4, a considerably cheaper vehicle. Overall, the Japanese brand still retains the number one spot, but Tesla is right on its tail.

Last year, Toyota enjoyed a 17% market share in California, with 289,304 registrations. Comparatively, Tesla took 11% with a total of 186,711 registrations. This gap is expected to close in the next year or two.

2017-2023 Tesla Model 3 Forward Vision Tesla

Between 2021 and 2022, Tesla nearly doubled its market share, signifying immense growth. Interestingly, loyal Toyota and Honda buyers are swapping their Japanese chariots for Tesla electric vehicles. While Honda and Toyota were trailblazers with hybrid and hydrogen technology, both have fallen behind in the EV race, forcing eco-friendly customers to abandon ship and purchase a Tesla.

EVAdoption CEO Loren McDonald says the recent spate of Tesla price cuts will contribute to the brand's takeover of the California market. While many don't consider Elon Musk's automaker to be a luxury automaker, it's classed as such and pipped all the big premium brands last year.

As the electric car movement gains momentum, the legacy brands will only become more vulnerable to Tesla. Toyota, for example, recorded just 622 registrations in California for the bZ4X electric car.

2020-2023 Tesla Model Y Driving Back View Tesla

Sales of Toyota's first modern EV were affected last year after a scandalous recall forced the company to pull the vehicle from the market. California is the biggest automotive market in America. It's one of the most EV-friendly and has even decided to ban the sale of ICE-powered vehicles by 2035.

Residents are prepared for this change, which shows in the registration figures. A staggering 78,934 Model 3s were registered in California last year. The Camry trailed behind at 55,967. The Model Y is the overall best seller, with 87,257 recorded registrations. The RAV4 came in at 59,794. Interestingly, all the above vehicles outsold the Ford F-Series trucks, which managed 40,232 registrations.

If Toyota stands a chance of retaining its position, it will have to accelerate the development process for upcoming electric vehicles.

2021-2023 Toyota Camry Driving Front Angle Toyota

The Japanese automaker doesn't believe in putting all its eggs in the EV basket and has decided to take a more measured approach. Aside from investing in hydrogen, the company believes hybrids and plug-in hybrids hold the key to sustainable motoring.

Tesla may be closing in on Toyota's market share in California, but the Japanese brand still leads global sales. Last year, the company recorded a staggering total of 10,483,024 in 2022, beating the Volkswagen Group. Speaking of the German giant, VW believes it will soon topple Tesla and ascend to the EV throne.

The next few years are crucial for new and legacy automakers, and it will be interesting to see who will become the next global leader.

2019-2023 Toyota RAV4 Three Quarter Front Left Side View Toyota

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2017-2023 Tesla Model 3 Forward Vision
2020-2023 Tesla Model Y Driving Back View
2021-2023 Toyota Camry Driving Front Angle
2019-2023 Toyota RAV4 Three Quarter Front Left Side View

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