Top Selling Electric Cars in New Zealand

If you’re interested in an EV, what options do you have? Canstar looks at the top selling electric cars in New Zealand.

Electric cars and hybrids are now common sights on our roads, and the pure EV brands of BYD and Tesla are two of the nation’s top selling passenger car brands.

In 2023, BYD sold 3715 cars, securing the No.10 spot on the list of the year’s best selling car marques, and Tesla shifted 4907 Model Ys and Model 3s, placing it at No.8.

In 2022, EV and hybrid cars accounted for just over a third of all new car registrations. And last year that percentage increased to 41%. Overall, pure EV models increased from a 10% market share in 2022 to 14.5% in 2023.

Although given the scrapping of the Clean Car Discount, and the introduction of the Road User Charge for PHEV and EV drivers, it will be interesting to see if electric and hybrid sales experience continued growth throughout 2024:

Sales by Engine Type 2023 Sales by Engine Types 2024
30% Diesel 41% Diesel
29% Petrol 36% Petrol
26.5% Hybrid 21% Hybrid
14.5% EV 2% EV

Top selling totally electric vehicle models:

January’s EV numbers are well down on December’s, when the top selling car, the MG 4, shifted 623 units, and the 10th placed car, the Ford Mustang Mach-E sold 90 cars. In a rush to beat the Clean Car Discount shut-off date, a record 3361 EVs were sold in the last month of 2023, compared to a total of just 244 in January.

However, it’s still early days, and there are some interesting new additions to the best-selling EV car list, notably the BYD Seal, and the new EVs from Toyota, the bZ4X, and Subaru, the Solterra:

Top Selling EVs 2022 Top Selling EVs 2023 Top Selling EVs January 2024
1 Tesla Model Y (4226) 1 Tesla Model Y (3936) 1 BYD Seal (31)
2 Tesla Model 3 (2781) 2 BYD Atto 3 (3171) 2  Tesla Model Y  (25)
3 BYD Atto 3 (1685) 3 MG 4 (1793) 3  Toyota bZ4X (23)
4 MG ZS EV (1106) 4 MG ZS (1648) 4 Subaru Solterra (21)
5 Polestar 2 (818) 5 Tesla Model 3 (971) 5 Audi Q4 E-Tron (14)
6 Hyundai Kona EV (814) 6 Kia EV6 (955) 6  BMW i | MG 4 | BMW 4 (12)
7 Kia EV6 (683) 7 Kia Niro (660) 7 BMW X | Ford Mustang Mach-E (9)
8 Hyundai Ioniq 5 (483) 8 Hyundai Kona (597) 8 Kia EV9 (8)
9 Peugeot 208 (358) 9 Hyundai Ioniq (558) 9 BMW 5 | Volvo EX30 (7)
10 Kia Niro (332) 10 Polestar 2 (541) 10 Audi Q4 E-Tron (6)

→Related article: Best Hybrid Cars in New Zealand


Searching for the Cheapest Personal Loan?

If you’re looking for the cheapest personal loan, Canstar’s personal loan comparison tables can help. The table below displays the sponsored unsecured personal loan products available on Canstar’s database for a three-year loan of $10,000 in Auckland, with links to lenders’ websites. Use Canstar’s personal loan comparison selector to view a wider range of products on Canstar’s database. Canstar may earn a fee for referrals.

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Looking for great value car insurance for you and your family? Each year, we release our car insurance awards, including winners for Insurer of the Year, Outstanding Value, and Most Satisfied Customers. As part of our award results, we also publish our Outstanding Value Star Ratings, covering car insurance for different age groups. Below are our top-rated providers in the drivers aged 30-49 category. Click here to view our complete car insurance Star Ratings for all age groups.

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See here for our ratings methodology. The table above is an abridged version of our research. For the full results of our latest Car Insurance Ratings and Award, click here.

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Most popular electric cars in New Zealand

Below is an overview of the top-selling EVs of 2023 in New Zealand. Prices do not include on-road costs and should be used as a guide only.

Tesla Model Y (from $67,900)

The Model Y comes in three versions (range/top speed/0-100km):

  • Rear-wheel drive: 455km | 217km/h | 6.9s
  • Long-range AWD: 533km | 217km/h | 5s
  • Performance: 514km | 250km/h | 3.7s

All models come with an eight-year battery warranty, or 160,000km for the Real-Wheel Drive model and 192,000km for the AWD and Performance models, whichever comes first.

BYD Atto 3 (from $56,990)

The Atto 3 comes in three versions (range/0-100km):

  • Standard: 345km | 7.3s
  • Extended: 420km | 7.3s
  • Tachyon: 420km | 7.3s

The Tachyon is essentially the Extended model, but with with a cosmetic makeover. Atto 3 batteries come with a warranty of 8 years / 160,000kms, whichever comes first.

MG 4 (from $46,990)

The MG 4 comes in four standard versions (range/0-100km):

  • Excite 51: 350km | 7.7s
  • Excite 64: 450km | 7.2s
  • Essence 64: 435km | 7.2s
  • Long Range 77: 530km | 6.5s

The Essence and Long Range models come with greater levels of luxury and improved safety features. Also available is the MG4 XPower performance model (from $69,990), which boasts sports styling, a range of 400km and can speed from 0-100km in 3.8s. All models come with an unlimited km, seven-year warranty.

MG ZS EV (from $50,990)

electric cars mg zs ev

The MG ZS EV comes in three standard versions:

  • Excite: 320km range
  • Essence: 320km range
  • Long Range: 440km range

The Essence and Long Range models come with greater levels of luxury and improved safety features. All models come with an unlimited km, seven-year warranty.

Tesla Model 3 (from $67,500)

electric cars tesla model 3

The Model Y comes in two versions (range/0-100km):

  • Rear-wheel drive: 515km | 6.1s
  • Long-range AWD: 629km | 4.4s

The battery warranties are 8 years (160,000km) for the rear-wheel drive model and eight-years (192,000km) for the long-range Model 3.


Looking for a Great Car Loan?

The table below displays some of the unsecured personal loan products available on Canstar’s database for a three-year loan of $10,000 in Auckland (some may have links to lenders’ websites). The products are sorted by Star Rating (highest to lowest) followed by company name (alphabetical). Use Canstar’s personal loan comparison selector to view a wider range of products on Canstar’s database. Canstar may earn a fee for referrals.

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About the author of this page

Bruce Pitchers

This report was written by Canstar’s Editor, Bruce Pitchers. Bruce has three decades’ experience as a journalist and has worked for major media companies in the UK and Australasia, including ACP, Bauer Media Group, Fairfax, Pacific Magazines, News Corp and TVNZ. Prior to Canstar, he worked as a freelancer, including for The Australian Financial Review, the NZ Financial Markets Authority, and for real estate companies on both sides of the Tasman.


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