Tesla's Model 3 sedan recorded more registrations in California than its class rivals BMW 3 Series and Mercedes C-Class in the first quarter, according to a report by the California New Car Dealers Association (CNCDA).

Model 3 registrations totaled 3,723, or 14.3 percent of the near-luxury segment, compared with 3,323 for the Mercedes variant and 3,260 for the BMW model, the CNCDA report said.

Tesla started delivering the Model 3 to customers in December 2017. California is a key market for global luxury vehicle brands not just because of its size, but because other markets often follow trends set by wealthy consumers in the state.

The registration figures were a bright spot in a week that saw Consumer Reports citing safety issues including poor braking distance in its decision not to recommend the Model 3.

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