Electric-vehicle sales in Germany will surpass California's for the first time this year, with a range of government incentives propelling Europe’s biggest auto market ahead of Tesla's home state.
Customers in Germany bought 98,370 fully electric cars in the first nine months, roughly a third more than what California sold, according to a report from Berlin-based Schmidt Automotive Research.
In November, sales of full-electric cars in Germany rose by 523 percent to 28,965 in a total market that fell by 3 percent. Tesla's vehicle sales jumped 500 percent to 1,680 units for a 0.6 percent market share.
State-funded subsidies of as much as 9,000 euros ($10,900) per battery-powered vehicle have boosted Germany’s electric-car fleet to twice the size of Norway's, which still reigns as the country with the highest per-capita EV penetration.
Germany overtaking California is a boon for local automakers Volkswagen, Daimler and BMW as they seek to catch up with Tesla.
Once world leaders in automotive innovation, the three German automakers combined are valued at less than half their U.S. rival, which is building a factory near Berlin to challenge the companies on their home turf.