OSLO (Reuters) – Tesla topped Norway’s car sales statistic for a third consecutive year in 2023, extending its lead over rivals despite an ongoing conflict between the U.S. electric vehicle maker and the Nordic region’s powerful labour unions.

Almost five out of six new cars sold in Norway last year were powered by battery only, with Tesla’s share of the overall market rising to 20.0% from 12.2% in 2022, registration data showed on Tuesday.

Overall, the market share of new electric vehicles in Norway rose to 82.4% in 2023 from 79.3% in 2022, the Norwegian Road Federation (OFV) said.

Seeking to become the first nation to end the sale of petrol and diesel cars by 2025, oil-producing Norway exempts fully electric vehicles from many taxes imposed on internal combustion engine rivals, although some levies were introduced in 2023.

(Reporting by Victoria Klesty, editing by Terje Solsvik)

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