Driving an electric car used to be an obscure choice, but it’s now becoming a mainstream preference. With climate change and the need for more sustainable options, owning an electric vehicle (EV) is no longer a niche and a trendy thing to do. However, getting the latest model might not always be the most cost-efficient approach.
Luckily, the market for used electric cars is growing rapidly in the USA, and here are some reasons why buying a second-hand EV might just be the way to go.
Why Choose Used Electric Cars?
Whenever you purchase a brand new model, you may shell out a pretty penny. Buying pre-owned has the benefit of the initial depreciating value already taken into account, saving you a considerable sum of money.
Low Operating Costs
Electric cars require minimal maintenance, usually needing fewer oil changes, air filters, and engine parts, translating to more significant savings in the long run.
When purchasing a used electric car, you are still contributing to promoting sustainability and eliminating carbon emissions. Although the battery’s lifespan may vary, reusing it lowers the production of new batteries, meaning less energy consumption and pollution.
Is it Worth It?
According to Carfax, used EV sales have increased by over 116% since 2016. Here are the top five used EVs sold in the USA for 2021, based on AutoTrader:
- Tesla Model S
- Tesla Model X
- Nissan Leaf
- Chevrolet Bolt
- BMW i3
The cars listed above are all relatively high-end models, but with the significant cost savings associated with purchasing them used, it makes them more accessible to a more significant customer base.
What to Look out for When Buying Used?
Like all things, buying used always involves doing your homework. When it comes to electric cars, however, there are specific caveats to take into account. You must consider the following when purchasing:
- The battery’s remaining lifespan: Try to purchase an EV with a battery capacity of over 90%, as replacing the battery pack could be a substantial future expense.
- Warranty: Ensure that the previous owner maintained the vehicle well, and the battery is still covered under warranty.
- The estimated range: It is essential to keep in mind that the advertised range is an estimate and is affected by factors like climate and driving style.
- Charging compatibility: Make sure the electric charging stations in the area support the car’s onboard charger and that it charges using a standard outlet.
- Avoid Early Models: Electric cars on the market may vary in reliability or performance. By avoiding early models, you may avoid any issues or limitations with charging and operating efficiency.
The Future of Electric Cars
The EV revolution has only just begun. According to the US Department of Energy:
- The number of electric cars on U.S. roads reached over one million last year, and it continues to grow.
- In 2020, electric vehicles had a 2.5% market share, projected to reach 30% by 2030.
- The U.S. Federal government provides incentives like tax credits to lower initial purchasing costs for electric vehicles.
- Over 50 new EV models are set to debut by 2022, increasing the options for affordable electric cars.
As electric cars continue to grow in popularity and the benefits of owning one become more evident, owning an electric car will transform into a more feasible and attractive choice. As the market for pre-owned vehicles continues to expand, buying a used electric car in the USA may be the way to go for individuals looking to lower their carbon footprint while enjoying the perks of owning a car.