If you’re shopping for used cars, electric vehicles will be an option you’ll come across. With the ever-growing demand for EVs, electric car models have started to trickle into the used car space.
But should you buy a used electric vehicle and what are the pros and cons of doing so? Read on to see if a pre-owned EV could be a good fit for you.
Probe Into the Battery Life When Buying a Used Electric Car
Arguably the single most important component of an electric vehicle is the battery. Understanding the EV’s battery history, whether it has been replaced, whether single fuel cells were replaced, or if there have been other battery issues is important. The cost of a new battery is hefty, ranging anywhere from $4,000 to $20,000. Just as you wouldn’t buy a used gas-powered vehicle that has a faulty engine, you wouldn’t want to buy a used electric vehicle with a faulty battery.
Use Battery Life as a Negotiation Tool
Understanding an electric vehicle’s battery history will also give you leverage power during negotiations. Think of the battery’s history as the mileage of a traditional gas-powered vehicle.
The higher the mileage on used cars, the lower their value. Whether you buy from a private seller or a dealership, discuss the battery’s history, and don’t be afraid to use it as a negotiation tool.
Understand the EV’s Range
Electric cars have a driving range of anywhere from 200 to 400 miles on a single charge. It’s important to understand the vehicle’s driving range because this will help you determine if it’s the right vehicle for you. Purchasing an electric vehicle that has a short driving range might not benefit you if you’re someone who has lengthy commutes. You also need to keep in mind that a vehicle with a higher driving range like the Tesla Model S which can reach up to almost 400 miles will have a much higher price point than a short-range electric car.
Understand How the Electric Car Charges
Not all electric vehicles charge the same either. Some models charge faster than others while some cars might need more charging sessions than others. You’ll come across level one, level two, and level three chargers. Each level offers its own pros and cons, and some chargers are only compatible with certain models.
When you’re searching for used electric vehicles, consider the vehicle’s charging needs and whether that responsibility works with your lifestyle. Additionally, it’s also important to consider whether you’ll have access to compatible electric vehicle chargers.
Explore Available Government Incentives
Drivers of new electric vehicles can enjoy some pretty great tax credits. While these tax incentives are typically limited to newly purchased electric vehicles, some used electric vehicles can also qualify. When you’re shopping for a used electric vehicle, be sure to do your research on available tax credits and incentives for qualifying models. This can help you narrow down the options all while helping you save some money along the way.
Does an Electric Car Make Sense for You?
Overall, when you’re purchasing an electric vehicle, you want to make sure it’s a good fit for your lifestyle. You wouldn’t purchase a diesel pickup truck if you needed a gas-friendly commuter vehicle for everyday use. In the same manner, you don’t want to shop for an electric vehicle that offers too much or too little in terms of performance and comfort.
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