Used Electric Cars: Should You Buy One?

Electric powered automobiles are way too high-priced! Yeah, the new ones are nevertheless rather pricey, while issues are shifting little by little. 

But what about acquiring a used or second-hand EV? Is it a good notion? And what really should you check out out for? 


Let’s kick items off with selling price for the reason that let’s experience it, which is the primary explanation you’re contemplating about getting a used EV, is not it? 

But beware, just since you are buying a utilized EV, does not imply it’s heading to be low-cost. The issue is that there is so a lot demand from customers and so very little offer of EVs. There are so a lot of stories of people purchasing a Tesla Model 3, driving it for a several months, and selling it for Extra than the man or woman bought it for.  

So do your sums. Get out a pen and paper or open up a spreadsheet. Operate out how considerably you’ll help you save on fuel and maintenance as opposed to a combustion alternative. You may possibly get a extremely enjoyable shock. And the excess bit of funds you shell out upfront may shell out for itself quite swiftly. 


Let us communicate dependability, and I have some seriously good news listed here for you. You know all those people stories you’ve heard of batteries getting changed for tens of countless numbers of bucks right after a few of yrs? Yeah, nonsense! If you want to know additional about that then examine out our other films on EV batteries. 

The trustworthiness and wellbeing of EV batteries are proving to be excellent. Now some of the really early LEAFs and Zoe are commencing to wrestle at this phase, but they are styles that have been out for 10 several years now! We’ll touch on battery health all over again in a moment. But suffice to say that EV batteries are extremely responsible. 

Dependability also extends to the rest of the auto. You see, EVs are so considerably a lot more easy. There are considerably a lot less moving sections, and considerably considerably less to go incorrect! No lover belts, timing belts, spark plugs…and so on. So EVs split down significantly much less and involve a great deal less routine maintenance.  


Back to batteries all over again for a second. They degrade more than time, there is no doubt about that! But the rate that they do is very tiny. You can hope modern-day EVs to keep more than 90{09e594db938380acbda72fd0ffbcd1ef1c99380160786adb3aba3c50c4545157} of their battery health just after 100,000 miles. In simple fact, the battery will most very likely outlast the daily life of the auto by itself. 

But you want to be a bit far more watchful when purchasing a utilized EV. For case in point, if you are searching at some thing that is 5 or additional many years aged, then it is possible to have experienced major degradation.

A 2016 Nissan LEAF with 100,000 miles on the clock is likely to be down to a thing like 80{09e594db938380acbda72fd0ffbcd1ef1c99380160786adb3aba3c50c4545157}…definitely dependent on how the car has been dealt with. So you really have to do your homework below if you are acquiring a car or truck which is additional than 2 or 3 years previous. Thankfully there are approaches to uncover out about battery health and fitness. The Nissan LEAF has a useful dial on the sprint that exhibits the battery well being in 12 bars.

For most cars and trucks, you can obtain a little piece of package that plugs into the car’s laptop or computer and will explain to you the battery well being. We will not go through them all right here so if you’re searching at a utilised EV, then a tiny google research will demonstrate you the details you’ll have to have. 

Another point to search out for is battery leasing. It is not widespread these times. But if you’re searching at the likes of an older Renault Zoe, several of individuals automobiles had been battery leased. So you really don’t want to pay 1,000s for a car or truck, and then discover out you really do not personal all of it! 

The past place on batteries is to match up your selection with your requirements. If you are on the lookout at an older EV on a tiny spending budget, then you might nicely get minimal array on the auto you buy. What type of miles do you do on a typical day? Possibly a conquer-up aged Renault Zoe is sufficient to do your day-to-day desires. Then just rent a vehicle for that yearly street vacation with some of the revenue you’ve saved! 


Right before you invest in a utilised EV, make guaranteed you know how you will charge it. Do you have a driveway? Are there loads of public chargers shut to you if you never? Is there a reliable charger at do the job? 

But what’s also vital is that you enjoy out for how quickly the auto prices. For illustration, older Nissan LEAFs with no updates could only demand at 3 and a fifty percent kW on AC, so which is really slow. The Zoe may demand at 22kW on AC. Also, some older EVs did not essentially occur with speedy DC charging, and that may perfectly be a deal-breaker for you. 

It is also really worth checking what charging cables arrive with the car. Make sure that there is at least a cable to hook you up to an AC publish these types of as the Mennekes Style 2. But you will also want to have a granny cable handy. They’re wonderful for situations when there’s no dedicated charger…but you can find a common domestic socket to trickle charge. 

Some Options 

Nissan LEAF 

The Nissan LEAF is absolutely producing our checklist of favored applied EVs. It’s been all over for extra than a decade and we adore it! Hundreds of countless numbers of drivers have set up thousands and thousands and thousands and thousands of miles! 

Now, the original LEAF is probably likely to have genuinely experienced some really serious battery degradation…so for us, there is a sweet place in there. Styles from all around 2016 and 2017 ended up the pre-refresh. Most of them have a 30kWh battery, about 26.5kWh of which was usable. But they’ll most likely have endured 10{09e594db938380acbda72fd0ffbcd1ef1c99380160786adb3aba3c50c4545157}-20{09e594db938380acbda72fd0ffbcd1ef1c99380160786adb3aba3c50c4545157} degradation at this stage. But you are nevertheless wanting at a car or truck that will get you about 100 miles. 

Glance out for styles that preferably have the 6.6kW onboard charger and the Cold Pack for preheating. The major-spec stage also has some seriously pleasant tech, such as heated seats entrance and rear, 360-diploma cameras, cruise regulate, keyless entry. And there’s first rate area in the back and boot! 

Prices are likely to differ so considerably all about the environment so we won’t go into aspects.  

Renault Zoe 

We’re major followers of the Renault Zoe here…heck, I’ve owned 2 of them myself! The 1st 1 I acquired was a battery lease, and I ended up providing it on for a lot more than I bought it!  
We imagine it is a great EV, primarily if you never have off-street parking. Why is that? Nicely, it’s a little bit lesser than the LEAF so a lot easier for parking. But the key issue is that it has 22kW AC charging. Depending on where you dwell, these may be a godsend! You can conveniently fill them up from in close proximity to empty to whole in the time it can take you to do the weekly store if the supermarket has a 22kW AC put up nearby! 

The Zoe is tried out and tested at this phase. They are at ease to generate. Whilst slow by today’s criteria, they’ll give loads of fossil auto motorists a shock the first time around!  

Although we love the LEAF and Zoe, there are lots of other actually fantastic possibilities. The Bolt is a good 1 in the US, the Hyundai Ioniq is extremely economical. The listing goes on and on! 
Some very last bits of advice 

Some last bits of tips right before we indication off! Figure out your deal breakers! Will you be in a position to cost it very easily? No? Then hold out until finally it is correct. Will a 7- or 8-yr-outdated Nissan LEAF 24kWh make the return vacation to operate in winter? No? Then get a distinct motor vehicle. 

Also, there is a seriously passionate EV local community out there. So access out to your regional EV owner’s associations, they’ll be only also delighted to aid give you information that will be unique to where by you reside this sort of as pricing and charging!  

Now we’ve made tons of films on all features of the EV world masking distinctive forms of charging, distinctive cars, what is a kWh, what is DC…, and so on. So go test out some of people videos for extra details. 


We enjoy listening to from men and women all over the world. So permit us know what you consider in the responses. 

Have you acquired a utilized EV? If so, what did you go for…and why? 

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