Tesla Close to Surpassing BMW for Top U.S. Luxury Car Sales

According to Automotive News, Tesla is steadily moving in on the top U.S. luxury car brand spot currently held by BMW, which claimed the title for the third year in a row after delivering 336,644 luxury sedans and crossovers during 2021.

Tesla, on the other hand, exceeded analyst projections and delivered a whopping 936,000 vehicles in 2021 across the globe. While the electric vehicle (EV) pioneer does not break its deliveries down by region, the Automotive News Research & Data Center estimates that Tesla delivered 313,400 luxury cars in the year.

That puts the American EV maker in a close second, with less than 25,000 units separating Tesla from top spot holder BMW. That’s not at all surprising, given that Tesla’s Model 3 and Model Y EVs became the most popular luxury cars in the U.S. last year and the Model 3 also claimed the title of the world’s best-selling premium vehicle.

BMW’s luxury automotive sales in the U.S. went up 21% year-over-year, but that dulls in comparison to Tesla’s 66% growth in the sector during 2021. At this rate, Tesla should handily usurp BMW’s crown by year’s end.

Tesla’s global sales were up an even more impressive 87% in the year, and all that in a year riddled with global supply chain issues that knocked many automakers to their knees.

What’s more, Tesla’s delivery numbers consist entirely of all-electric offerings, while BMW’s sales are a mix of the veteran automaker’s luxury gas guzzlers, plug-in hybrids, and electric cars.

U.S. luxury vehicle sales rose 13% in 2021, while the automotive industry as a whole only gained 3.3%. All luxury brands combined delivered 2.2 million vehicles in the year, accounting for a record 14.7% of total light-vehicle sales in the U.S.

Lexus trailed Tesla with 304,475 luxury vehicle sales in the year, while Mercedes-Benz came in fourth with 276,102 units delivered (up a marginal 0.4% from 2020). Audi rounded out the top five luxury brands in the U.S. for 2021, with 196,038 deliveries.

Tesla almost hit one million deliveries in 2021, and the EV giant is currently looking at an even better year, with two new production facilities — Gigafactory Texas and Gigafactory Berlin, expected to go online later this year.