Three days ago CleanTechnica published an interesting story titled, Will Tesla Model 3 Become Top-Selling Car In USA? #2? #3? #5? In that story the author Zachary Shahan argues that "if production does get to the level Elon says it will, in one year, we may be much more seriously considering whether the Model 3 could replace the Honda Civic, Toyota Corolla, or Toyota Camry for the bronze, silver, or gold medal in US passenger car sales."
So what could drive Tesla Model 3 to the top three best selling cars in the United States.
Enthusiastic Review of Model 3
Tesla needs enthusiastic reviews from its customers.
I was reading a discussion on this subject on Reddit and here are few interesting opinions. One Tesla enthusiast writes the following. "The thing that could (will!) drive Model 3 sales into the top 3 would be enthusiastic reviews from the hundreds of thousands who are now waiting to configure their car. Fanboys, like most of us, will go to online forums and check magazine reviews, but for the million plus people who currently buy the three top selling passenger cars each year hearing several of their friends/family rave about an affordable Tesla may be the key to short term electric car success."
These reviews are important because number of EV enthusiasts mention that certain magazines have ties to big oil companies and are sponsored by them. Most of their revenues come from those sponsorship.
The Challenge To Tesla Sales
What will happen after incentives disappears after 2018? "I think we all need to realize that after 2018, when the federal credit disappears, the entire Tesla market is going to soften significantly for a while," writes another Tesla enthusiast. Model S and Model 3 yes, but I raise a question: are the Model X sales driven by federal incentives? They are already expensive cars without the incentives.
"I don't believe this will happen. I love Tesla, but with the tax incentives running out and the other manufacturers bringing more EV cars in the coming years, people will listen to their wallets. The Model 3 will make the market more accessible, but $35-60K is far from "mass market." Tesla Model 3 needs to be marketed for what it is, an entry level luxury sedan," writes another enthusiast.
Also take into consideration that the top best-selling cars in the United States cost $17-24k new, not $35k like Tesla Model 3.
What Can Tesla Do?
Do you remember how Tesla built more affordable Model S versions making Model S more accessible to more people? Now, who knows, perhaps Tesla can also consider the same approach with Model 3. "I think Tesla will make a more affordable Model 3 with a 35 kW battery, around 150 mile range and under $30k," whites another EV advocate on Reddit. I think this could be a viable option, depending on how many people will drop or keep their Model 3 reservations.