American brand Tesla has topped the list of electric cars sold in France in the first half of the year, new data has shown, with the Tesla Model 3 ahead of the Renault Zoé and the Peugeot e-208.
The ranking used data from automobile statistics company AAA Data to compile the list by car models sold, both to individuals and to businesses, including car hire firms.
This amounted to 13,084 Tesla Model 3 vehicles, versus 10,797 for the Renault Zoé, and 9,133 for the Peugeot e-208.
Tesla sales rapidly increased towards the end of the quarter. In June alone, it sold 5,000 vehicles.
The company opened a delivery centre in Paris-Nord Villepinte at the end of May, and another site in June, in Saint-Priest, near Lyon.
The ranking is surprising as France is often considered as more likely to buy French rather than American when it comes to cars. The second and third most popular brands (as well as the fifth and seventh) – Renault and Peugeot – are French.
The full list of electric cars sold in France in the first half of 2021 (to individuals and businesses)
1. Tesla Model 3: 13,084
2 - Renault Zoé: 10,797
3 - Peugeot e-208: 9,133
4 - Fiat 500e: 4,863
5 - Electric Renault Twingo: 4,424
6 - Kia e-Niro: 3,572
7 - Peugeot e-2008: 2,771
8 - Volkswagen ID3: 2,508
9 - Hyundai Kona Electric: 2,489
10 - Electric Mini: 2,161
The ranking was published just before government aid to encourage people to buy electric cars dropped by €1,000 from €7,000 to €6,000 on July 1. This is set to drop again to €5,000 from January 1, 2022.
The data does not show how many people used the government aid to help them buy a vehicle, but the aid only applies to cars that cost less than €45,000.
A new Tesla Model 3 costs from €47,990 in France, but the model’s SR+ version starts at €43,800, which comes in under the aid threshold.
Worldwide, Tesla has had a record year, delivering more than 200,000 vehicles in the second quarter of the year for the first time ever.
All vehicles sold to individuals
Beyond electric cars, the Dacia Sandero came out ahead of the Peugeot 208 in the rankings of all types of vehicles sold to individuals (as opposed to car rental companies or businesses).
A total of 33,951 Dacia Sandero vehicles were sold, versus the Peugeot 208, which sold 20,455; and the Peugeot 2008, which sold 15,909.
Tesla came in at 10th place overall on new cars sold to individuals only, at 9,415.
The full list of new cars (of all motor types) sold in France in the first half of 2021 (to individuals only)
1 - Dacia Sandero: 33,951
2 - Peugeot 208: 20,455
3 - Peugeot 2008: 15,909
4 - Renault Captur: 13,613
5 - Toyota Yaris: 12,835
6 - Renault Clio: 12,266
7 - Dacia Duster: 10,848
8 - Citroën C3: 10,390
9 - Renault Twingo: 9,970
10 - Tesla Model 3: 9,415