Driving electric vehicle adoption

Used EV Prices Now Lower Than Used Gas Cars, Passing Historic Milestone

Are you looking to buy a car but want to make a greener choice? Well, the good news is that now might be the perfect time to consider purchasing a used electric vehicle (EV). For EV enthusiasts and mainstream car shoppers, there’s some exciting news to consider.

One of the most common concerns about electric cars has been their high upfront cost compared to traditional gas-powered vehicles. However, the landscape is rapidly changing, and the used EV market is becoming increasingly attractive. In fact, used EVs are now often cheaper than their gas-powered internal combustion engine (ICE) counterparts, making them a compelling option for environmentally conscious and price conscious consumers alike. With used EVs, the price parity barrier has been broken, in historic news for car buyers.

(Image: Chevrolet)

Average Used EV Price in May 2024 Was Down 29.5% Year-Over-Year, Versus 6.1% for the Average Used ICE Car

Fortune reported on a study by iSeeCars of 1- to 5-year old vehicles. The study found that the average used EV price in May 2024 was down 29.5% year-over-year, versus 6.1% for the average used ICE car. The month-over-month differences show a very sudden shift.

In June 2023, an EV cost an average of $8,201 more than an ICE car, which was a 25.1% difference. By February 2024, EVs were $265 cheaper than ICE cars. In May 2024, the average price difference was -$2,657, resulting in EVs being 8.5% cheaper than ICE cars.

ICE car prices in that time frame have been stable for the most part, hovering around the $30,000-$32,000 range. Used EVs have dropped from an average of $40,916 in June 2023 to $28,767 last month, in a stunning development. This is fantastic news for used EV buyers.

The Used Electric Cars That Have Seen the Biggest 12-Month Price Drops, According to Iseecars:

Chevrolet Bolt EV

Price/percentage difference: -$7,041/ -28.0%

Hyundai Kona Electric

Price/percentage difference: -$7,780/ -26.5%

Kia Niro EV

Price/percentage difference: -$7,561/ -24.8%

Nissan LEAF

Price/percentage difference: -$5,546/ -24.0%

Tesla Model 3

Price/percentage difference: -$8,932/ -23.9%

Tesla Model X

Price/percentage difference: -$13,690/ -18.8%

Tesla Model S

Price/percentage difference: -$10,399/ -15.8%

(Image: Tesla)

Reasons for the Drop in Used EV Prices

The shift in pricing can be attributed to several factors. Firstly, as more consumers adopt electric vehicles, the availability of used EVs has increased. This has led to a more competitive market, driving down prices and making electric cars more accessible to a wider range of buyers.

Additionally, the rapid advancement of EV technology has resulted in newer models boasting improved range, performance, and features. As a result, older EV models have depreciated in value, making them an affordable option for individuals looking to make the switch to electric without breaking the bank. Also, price cuts on new electric models by Tesla and other EV makers have driven the used EV prices down.

Furthermore, the maintenance and operating costs of electric vehicles are significantly lower than those of traditional gas cars. With fewer moving parts and no need for regular oil changes and less visits to the mechanic, the long-term savings associated with owning an EV are significant. In 2022, Atlas Public Policy published a study of total cost of ownership (TCO) of an EV vs. ICE, showing EVs are more cost-effective.

Federal Tax Credit up to $4,000 for Used EVs

Recurrent reported that over 30% of used EVs are eligible for a federal tax credit. This can bring the already low price down even further in most cases. The credit is now a point-of-sale rebate up to $4,000, offering instant savings. Some vehicle and buyer eligibility criteria can be checked for free.

(Image: Electrify Expo)

Due Diligence and Research Before Buying a Used EV

When considering a used EV, it’s important to conduct thorough research and due diligence. Factors to consider include the vehicle’s battery health, remaining warranty coverage, and charging infrastructure in your area. Ensuring that the battery is in good condition is particularly crucial, as it is one of the most expensive components of an electric vehicle. Recurrent’s advice to used EV buyers includes six crucial things every car shopper should check before buying a used EV.

MotorTrend reported that Recurrent’s battery health reports are like a “CarFax” for used EVs. The reports show a used EV’s battery health, including a prediction of remaining range. Knowing about remaining range and other battery issues is important before buying.

Charging availability remains a problem for many EV buyers. We recommend researching charging thoroughly in your area before buying a used or new EV. Those who can charge at home have a great advantage with convenience and cost savings. However, most multifamily residents do not currently have charging available. Multifamily residents are currently about a third of the US population.

Private investment and government funding is rapidly building out more public charging around the US, but some areas are still lacking in charging availability. The map on the US Department of Energy’s Alternative Fuels Data Center (AFDC) website shows which areas lack public EV charging stations. See which cities in the US installed the most non-Tesla charging stations over the past year, in a study by EVinfo.net for the EV Charging Summit and Expo blog.

(Image: BP Pulse)

Environmental Benefits

There are numerous benefits to purchasing a used electric vehicle, on top of the significant cost savings. For one, by opting for a used EV, you are extending the lifespan of an existing vehicle, thereby reducing the demand for new car production. This is a considerable advantage from an environmental standpoint, as it helps minimize the carbon footprint associated with manufacturing new vehicles.

The Automotive Industry Continues to Electrify

As the automotive industry continues to embrace electrification, the used EV market is expected to further expand and evolve. This bodes well for consumers who are intrigued by the prospect of going electric but have been hesitant due to cost concerns. By taking advantage of the current price dynamics in the used EV market, environmentally conscious drivers can make the switch to electric without compromising on affordability.

The plummeting prices of used electric vehicles present a compelling opportunity for EV enthusiasts to embrace sustainable transportation without a hefty price tag. With the right research and considerations, purchasing a used EV can be a financially savvy and environmentally responsible choice. So, if you’ve been contemplating making the switch to electric, now could be the perfect time to explore the used EV market and find a green ride that fits your budget, but do your research first.