Changes in the Netherlands’ EV incentives have resulted in an important boost in electric vehicle sales and Tesla rode the wave with a doubling of its sales in the important market in 2018.

Tesla calls the Netherlands home since it’s where it established its European headquarters (pictured above) and built its first final assembly factory in Europe.

We reported on sales surging in the market earlier this year and that has continued throughout the third and fourth quarter.

The road authorities have now released the registration data for the full year and confirmed that Tesla delivered a record 2,214 vehicles in December for a total of 8,604 vehicles in 2018.

That’s up from 3,288 vehicles during the previous year, according to the same registration data.

In 2018, there were even a few Model 3 vehicles in the mix even though the vehicle is officially being introduced in the country next month:

  • Model S: 5,633 units
  • Model X: 2,966 units
  • Model 3: 5 units

4 out of the 5 Model 3’s were registered over the last month.

We knew of a few U.S. Model 3 vehicles being imported by individuals in Europe, but Tesla has also more recently brought several Model 3s to Europe, especially to test CCS charging.

But it’s a significant increase in Model S and Model X deliveries that have resulted in the overall doubling of sales.

As we previously reported, the surge can partly be explained by a significant tax break on the Benefit-in-kind (or BIK) ending for vehicles that cost more than €50,000, which is the case for Model S and Model X.

The BIK tax break was reportedly worth up to €19,000 for corporate electric vehicle owners over five years.

The government incentive reduced the tax to 4%, but it will go up to 22% for any amount over €50,000 starting next year.

It made the Model S and Model X very popular with corporate fleets.

The Jaguar I-Pace also fits in the category and it saw a surge in deliveries during the last month of the year as well.

The British automaker delivered 2,621 electric SUVs in the market last month – bringing the total year to date to 3,495 units.

Here’s the full registration data:

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Electrek’s Take

Great boost for Tesla and EVs in general in the Netherlands, but now sales are expected to crash after many people rushed to buy cars in Q4.

It’s weird considering the Netherlands also aims to only allow EVs for new car sales starting in 2030, but they are reportedly only planning to incentivize the sales again in 2021 with a 6,000 Euros incentive per EV.

That discount is planned to be gradually phased out as they get closer to 2030.

Personally, I think EV incentives are going to be much less important in 2021 onwards and they should instead be available now in order to keep the momentum going.

By 2021, I believe we are going to have many more EV options at a lower price thanks to economies of scale and battery costs decreasing. EVs should become much more competitive even without incentives or the true cost of gas-powered cars including their impact on the environment in their price.

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