Tesla’s been locked in a running disagreement with Norway’s unions for weeks now and has been feeling the effects. Well, everywhere but its showrooms where Norwegians continue to trek to and buy EVs. In fact, Tesla’s the topselling brand — for the third straight year.
Apparently not everyone in Norway hates Tesla. In fact, it would seem quite the opposite given the latest sales numbers from the Scandinavian country.
Norway is overwhelmingly committed to electric vehicles with more than 80% of new vehicles sold there being battery-powered. On top of that, Tesla is the topselling brand there, accounting for 20% of the EV market share, and has been for the last three years.
The company’s been locked in a battle with the country’s unions and pension funds because it refused to agree to demands from Swedish mechanics for collective bargaining rights for wages and other issues.
Because of this, Swedish dockworkers, truck drivers, postal employees, electricians, cleaners and others refuse to service Tesla, according to Reuters. More importantly, that support has spread as unions from Norway, Denmark and Finland helped block imports of Tesla cars into Sweden.
Still, there is no sign that the conflict is hurting Tesla sales in Norway, said Christina Bu, head of the Norwegian EV Association.
“We see no signals indicating that,” Bu told Reuters. Nor are the numbers — in Norway or Sweden, for that matter. Tesla sales rose in December, according to Mobility Sweden, the country’s auto industry association. Sales rose 9% in the country for the final month of the year. Moving from 1,645 vehicles to 1,789 last month.
Tesla’s Model Y was Sweden’s topselling car in 2023 with 16,412 new vehicles registered, ahead of Volvo’s XC40 with 13,606 cars.
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Other big sellers in Norway
While Tesla is the biggest brand, it’s not only one moving metal in Norway. Coming in second was Toyota with 12.4% of the market, up from 8%, and Volkswagen was third with 10.8%, down from 11.6%.