Car sales have been slip-sliding away when compared to crossover SUV deliveries lately, with BMW selling less than half of its 3 and 4 Series models than it did a decade ago, and Mercedes-Benz’ C-Class…

Tesla Model 3 nearly triples BMW 3 Series sales for 2021

2022 Tesla Model 3
Tesla’s Model 3 compact luxury car is the best-selling D-segment entry by a long shot.

Car sales have been slip-sliding away when compared to crossover SUV deliveries lately, with BMW selling less than half of its 3 and 4 Series models than it did a decade ago, and Mercedes-Benz’ C-Class down to a third of its 2010 numbers. Tesla’s all-electric Model 3 is bucking the trend, however, with a total of 12,800 Canadian deliveries in 2021, compared to just 4,348 for the 3 Series, and 3,010 sales of the C-Class.

The Model 3 outsold every other D-segment competitor last year in the U.S. market too, with 121,610 deliveries compared to 49,461 BMW 3 Series (or 72,398 including the 4 Series) and just 30,815 Mercedes C-Class models (which include three body styles).

2022 Tesla Model 3
The Model 3 provides a good balance of performance, efficiency, EV range capability, luxury and technology.

If the Model 3’s clean sweep of its category in North American markets wasn’t enough, last year it outsold the 3 Series in 28 European countries as well. In fact, with 141,429 deliveries under throughout 2021, Tesla’s entry-level car sold more units in Europe than the Canadian and U.S. markets combined, according to JATO Dynamics. Comparatively, the 3 Series only found 116,250 European buyers during the same period,

Back to Canada, the Tesla Model Y compact luxury crossover SUV didn’t fare as well as the Model 3 last year, both in total sales and when compared to rivals, due to just 6,400 examples sold for a sixth-place ranking in the compact luxury crossover SUV segment. Ahead of the Model Y was the Audi Q5 in first with 9,968 deliveries, while the Acura RDX came in second with 7,976 unit-sales. Third was the BMW X3 with 7,506 deliveries, while fourth was taken by Lexus’ NX with 7,283 new Canadian buyers, and finally Mercedes-Benz’ GLC-Class took fifth with 6,887 units sold.

2022 Tesla Model 3
Spacious, luxurious and a tech leader, Canadian luxury car buyers have spoken with their wallets, making the Model 3 number one in its class.

In the U.S., mind you, the Model Y was far and away number one in its class thanks to 161,529 deliveries compared to 86,478 combined BMW X3 and X4 sales (made up of 75,858 X3s and 10,620 X4s), so being that Canada often mirrors American sales in this category, albeit by approximately 10 percent of the volume, it’s likely that Tesla’s compact crossover would have placed much higher if enough units were made available (allocation is often the culprit). Whether or not calendar year 2022 will see a Canadian adoption of this U.S. market trend won’t be known until Tesla’s quarterly numbers start arriving in early April, and even if it’s not on top after Q1, it would be unwise to bet against Tesla being number one in Canada’s compact luxury crossover SUV class by the close of this year.

2022 Tesla Model Y
Tesla’s Model Y should follow the Model 3 into the compact luxury SUV segment’s top sales spot.

Currently, Tesla has factory leasing and financing rates on the Model 3 and Model Y from zero percent, so be sure to check out CarCostCanada to find out all the details. You can also configure your Model 3, Model Y, Model S and Model X within the CarCostCanada site or via their free app.

Notably, BMW is fighting back to reclaim some market share with its new 4 Series-based i4, while also targeting Tesla’s Model X mid-size crossover SUV (and Audi’s E-tron) with its similarly sized iX. Find out more about the two Bavarian electrics by clicking here



Model 3 at Tesla winter proving grounds (0:15):

Snow laps in a Model 3 (0:15):

Model 3 Surprise (1:53):

Model 3 Guide | Navigate on Autopilot (1:16):

Model 3 Guide | Gear Selection (0:42):

Model 3 Guide | Mobile App (0:33):

Model 3 Guide | Phone Key (0:24):

Model 3 Guide | Key Card (0:25):

Model 3 Guide | Enhanced AutoPilot (0:49):

Model 3 Guide | AutoPark (0:45):

Model 3 Guide | Charging (0:38):

Model 3 Guide | Charging Adapters (0:35):

Model 3 Guide | Front Trunk (0:28):

First Model 3 Handovers (14:45):

Tesla Unveils Model 3 (22:43):

Story credit: Trevor Hofmann

Photo credits: Tesla

BMW is the ultimate niche filler. Seriously. The Munich-based premium marque manages to create obscure niches within the unique niches few other luxury rivals dare tap into, and when others don’t work…

2017 BMW X4 M40i

2017 BMW X4 M40i
For those who can’t make up their minds between a sport coupe and an SUV, BMW makes the fabulous X4. (Photo: Karen Tuggay, Canadian Auto Press)

BMW is the ultimate niche filler. Seriously. The Munich-based premium marque manages to create obscure niches within the unique niches few other luxury rivals dare tap into, and when others don’t work for their namesake brand they adapt them for Mini or Rolls-Royce?

The X4 was the obvious result of downsizing the already successful X6, the result of which sees even more sales than the larger mid-size model. Last year the X4 found 1,236 Canadians who liked the idea of a five-door sports coupe mixed with a compact SUV, whereas 1,178 BMW buyers chose the larger of the two. These aren’t game-changing sales compared to 5,417 X3s and 6,942 X5s sold within the same 12 months, but every little bit adds up, as BMW has also learned with its multiple 3 Series, 4 Series and 6 Series body styles.

2017 BMW X4 M40i
The X4’s low profile is sporty, and its M40i upgrades even more so. (Photo: Karen Tuggay, Canadian Auto Press)

Regarding the five-door coupe-cum-SUV (or whatever you want to call it), a nod should be given to Infiniti for its original FX that more or less originated the idea and subsequent QX70 (still available, albeit rare), while Land Rover’s Range Rover Evoque took the concept down one size to the entry-level SUV class, and even went so far to create a three-door SUV coupe and now a two-door convertible variant (it’s a lot cooler than it sounds).

Hitting even more at BMW’s core, Mercedes recently responded directly with the compact GLC Coupe and mid-size GLE Coupe, while a special mention should go out to Acura and its ill-fated ZDX, a model most people loathed (hence its cancellation) and I happen to still love.

2017 BMW X4 M40i
The X4 cabin is superbly crafted and M40i detailing particularly nice. (Photo: Karen Tuggay, Canadian Auto Press)

BMW makes two versions of the X4, starting with the more fuel-friendly $48,700 X4 xDrive28i and topped off with the bahn-storming $60,700 X4 M40i. That means the X4 xDrive35i has been discontinued, but due to the latter, which entered the scene last year, no one should shed any tears.

Where the xDrive35i was a blast to drive due to its twin-scroll turbocharged 3.0-litre inline-six that made 300 horsepower and 300 lb-ft of torque, the M40i takes the same engine and puts a much more engaging 355 horsepower and 343 lb-ft down to its four torque-vectoring wheels. Like the less potent model, the M40i utilizes an eight-speed automatic with paddle shifters; a version of that transmission also incorporated into the entry-level X4 xDrive28i, which incidentally is good for 241 horsepower and 258 lb-ft of torque.

2017 BMW X4 M40i
A sports car profile mixed with the heightened visibility of an SUV. (Photo: Karen Tuggay, Canadian Auto Press)

Of course, there’s a lot more than extra oomph behind the top-line model’s “M” badge. Along with some unique styling details, larger wheels and tires, bigger brakes, a sport suspension, exclusive interior trim, and more, the M40i also includes launch control for a blistering 4.9-second standing start to 100km/h.

Important news that just can’t wait for my upcoming review is the inclusion of BMW’s latest iDrive infotainment across the line, which features an ultra high-resolution display filled with a completely new menu design, faster processing, and enhanced graphics.

There’s so much more to tell you about, so make sure to come back and find out why adventuresome kid-less couples should consider an X4 over an X3…