Tesla Model 3: First EV in U.S. Top 10 Leased Vehicles

The Tesla Model 3 has become the first electric vehicle to enter the top 10 list of leased cars in the U.S., according to a recent report by Experian.

The Model 3 ranked seventh, accounting for 1.79% of new leased vehicles in the second quarter of this year. “One in 4 of the roughly 42,000 new retail Model 3s to hit the road last quarter was leased,” said Melinda Zabritski, Experian’s senior director of automotive financial solutions, to Automotive News.

The top three leased vehicles for the quarter were the Ford F-150, Honda CR-V, and Nissan Rogue, with leasing shares of 2.52%, 2.48%, and 2.26% respectively. Despite the Model 3’s strong performance, its quarterly combined retail sales and lease volumes still lagged behind these top three models.

Zabritski noted that leasing is particularly appealing in the electric vehicle (EV) market due to the rapid changes and new models being introduced. “An EV lease is a great way to avoid any of those ownership concerns that consumers might have,” she stated. The report also highlighted that EV leasing has seen a surge, partly because more models are now eligible for federal tax incentives. Interestingly, the Model 3 is one of the few vehicles that qualify for a buyer’s tax credit.

The Model 3’s leasing rate of about 21.2% exceeded the overall EV leasing rate for the quarter. This could be attributed to Tesla’s price cuts and its continued dominance in the U.S. EV market, according to Zabritski. The overall leasing rate was 21.3%, a slight increase from the same period last year but still below the rates seen in 2018 and 2019.