A Tesla Model S For Less Than A Model 3? You Bet!

JUN 3 2018 BY EVANNEX 24


What if you could buy a Tesla Model S for less than the price of a base Model 3? According to Auto Evolution, Tyler Hoover (a.k.a. Hoovies) did just that and “it has a great story. The car was listed on Auto Trader for $32,500. Somehow, the guy ended up paying [an extra] $1,000. Why? Well, the guy selling it had some people in California already interested, so Hoovies had to offer a small bonus.”

*This article comes to us courtesy of EVANNEX (which also makes aftermarket Tesla accessories). Authored by Matt Pressman. The opinions expressed in these articles are not necessarily our own at InsideEVs.

Above: Are there some killer deals on used Teslas? (Above: CleanTechnica / Photo: Kyle Field)

It was probably a salvage Model S, right? Wrong. The story gets even better. It’s reported that, “the owner of the Model S is the father of one of Tesla’s vice presidents… This bad boy cost around $85,000 when new, and it comes with the 85 kWh battery. So why is it so cheap? Well, for starters, it’s done 107,00 miles in six years.”

That said, it’s likely that the previous owner got some VIP service from Tesla due to the fact that his son actually works there. From the rear door to the drivetrain to the door handles — the former owner was able to get a bunch of parts replaced. So it looks like Hoovies was able to get an old Tesla with a plethora of new parts. Not bad.

Above: Tyler Hoover tells the story of buying the cheapest Tesla Model S in the USA (Youtube: Hoovies Garage)

What about the vehicle’s range after all these years? Hoovies writes (via Autotrader), “This 2012 Model S is a very early model, and one of the first few thousand ever delivered… [and] even with 107,000 miles, my battery still produces over 90 percent of its original capacity — and based on this graph created by Tesla enthusiasts sharing their battery capacity data and mileage, it seems to be the norm with these cars.”

Even CNET was impressed with Hoovies’ Tesla: “He paid just over $33,000 for it which looks like a pretty screaming deal when you compare that to the near-mythical $35,000 Model 3… Sure, it lacks things like dual motors or ‘Ludicrous Mode,’ but for most people, driving the car daily, that’s not that big of a deal. Plus the 85-kW model that Hoovie bought offers a range more than that of the standard Model 3 (265 vs 220).”

Above: Another key advantage of many used Model S vehicles is free Tesla supercharging (Image: Teslarati / Photo: Matt Simmons, Tesla Pittsburgh)

And there are other benefits too. CNET concludes, “The Model S is a physically larger vehicle with more room for passengers as well as cargo. Some used models will be Supercharger capable, while some will not, but those that are should be able to use the network for free (for now, anyway).” But, at the end of the day, “The most significant benefit will be a lack of waiting to get your car.”


Sources: Auto EvolutionAutotraderCNETHoovies Garage

*Editor’s Note: EVANNEX, which also sells aftermarket gear for Teslas, has kindly allowed us to share some of its content with our readers, free of charge. Our thanks go out to EVANNEX. Check out the site here.

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24 Comments on "A Tesla Model S For Less Than A Model 3? You Bet!"

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I wish him another 100,000 without replacing any of the the door handles! ( $900 just for the part)

Good luck 🙂

Yup, mine has the 2 year warranty and had to have minor part replacements here and there. No cost to me.

This self-proclaimed “shrewd negotiater” won’t have any factory warranty . Let’s see what repairs he has to do. Hope the previous owner had all the major items replaced already.

Why would you buy brand new factory parts for a car with 100K+ miles?!?!?!? That’s crazy, when you can get used door handles for $200-$300 on Ebay. And those used prices will continue to drop since owners of newer Model S’s report much lower rates of failure.

Yea ! Why ? …So you can have the same Problem 2to3 Months down the Road…Pay Now ….Pay Later………lol

I picked up a used 2015 Model S 70D with 39,000 miles for $47,500 (after selling my Leaf) about 6 weeks ago. Autopilot enabled, there’s some screaming deals out there if one looks. Oh, and depending on the state you reside, you may not have to even pay sales tax for private party sale.

Good luck, it’s a great time for electric cars!

It would have to Scream a lot Louder than that to get me interested..People in Michigan have Purchased the Revised Version Brand New with Full warranty 2018 75D’s all Wheel Drive with Free Super Charging for $69,000.00 after Rebate. 1Yr. Ago..

This is really interesting and it presents a real dilemma for model 3 reservation holders. What to do, keep waiting or go get an older model S right now? I believe the average purchase price for model 3 is way over US$ 40K so there ought to be loads of nice model S’ available in that price range, and the price will only come down as time goes by and as we all know the quality will get better once you get into 2014 models and so on. And it’s a lot nicer car, IMHO. Wish I could get one where I live, oh well, one day.

If you can wait, definitely wait as it’s a brand new car. Plus consider insurance costs.
It’s expected that the current S & X will be redone next year so they’ll drop the older models even more.

I like it Steve. Haven’t really heard that aspect yet (the refresh S and X models) adding to the current price drop for used models, but I like it!! To me, most electric buyers like myself have the patience of Job, but also want as much for our dollar as possible. The used market is right in the wheelhouse of EV aficionados, LOTS of bang for the buck without eating front end depreciation.

I also had that dilemma until I realized that I simply cannot fir the ModS into my parking space. The Mod3 fits barely, a Leaf fits perfectly (same size as my Prius).

That’s a phenomenal deal. I would definitely buy used at that price range.

I bought a used 2013 model S 85 kwh with 64,000 miles from Tesla 10 months ago for $43,000. Gave my 2011 Leaf to my nephew in Seattle. Looks like new, best car I have ever driven.

I love hearing stories like that! The more ‘commoners’ like me drive Teslas, the more awareness spreads that Teslas aren’t only for the rich.

100k mile car with highest insurance rates the country, with no even repair manual, for over $30k is not for rich? You need to be a millionaire car collector to maintain such car.

Sure any average income earner can sell his house, get rid of mortgage and other debts, and he would qualify for $30k autoloan then. After subtracting insurance and maintenance cost he may even have money left for some double wide manufactured house or a trailer, and some “invaluable” aftermarket accessories for his Tesla. It is your right to choose how to waste, sorry, spend your money. But I would be looking for some Prius or Camry or just anything under $3000 if I would be in the market for 100,000 mile clunkers.

I see you are working hard at spreading lies again, what’s new?
It was proven over and over that the insurance rates are not high. I know a guy that pay less for his S than i do for my Lexus. On the other hand, if your S is $100k then your rate will be higher than the rate on a prius, duh! The rest of your garbage comment doesn’t deserve a reply.

Thanks for beating me to the response Mark. (I’m still gonna give my 2 cents, though, too!)

Yep, zzz is definitely a shill for Big Oil and its’ “hold on” for the Hydrogen Hoax.

I work for a fire dept. I use myself as an example of the average hard working American who is FAR from a millionaire. I comfortably afford my used Model S because I live practically debt free before I make my next purchase(s). It’s not rocket science, its called being fiscally responsible between large purchases- which most folks do not do. Most folks want everything right now, hence the endless inundation of credit card, short-term, and auto title loan commercials. You cheapen the hard work and patience that folks like myself endure to have nice things (like Teslas) instead of simply working harder yourself.

If it was simply about getting from point A to point B, then yes, something under $3,000 would do the job. I could also sell my 2,000 sq ft house and move my family into a 1-room apartment and bank all those mortgage payments, too. And I could die with a huge pile of money in a bank account, but you also have to live a little along the way. Hence this article.

Enjoy your Camry and have a nice day.

zzzzzzzzzz said:

“100k mile car with highest insurance rates the country, with no even repair manual…”

Even before fact-checking, we know that none of this is true, since it’s posted by serial anti-Tesla FUDster and troll “zzzzzzzzzz”. But actually checking facts, we find two “pants on fire” untruths here, and one half-truth:

1. The “highest insurance rates” applies only to the highest performance trim Model S, the P100D, and not the 2012 Model S 85 (no “P” performance package, no “D” dual motor) described in this article.

2. The “highest insurance rates” applies only to new cars, not to the much lower insurance rates on used cars!

3. Cars don’t ordinarily come with a repair manual included, but if you want one for the 2012 Model S, you can get it for free online. See, for example, the link at: https://teslamotorsclub.com/tmc/posts/2675562/

“Well, for starters, it’s done 107,00 miles in six years”
The video “preview image” says 106,000?

(Was edited in the meantime)


This is the story of any brand new car : they lose value quick as hell. Tesla was a bit different as they were not able to keep with the demand, so buying used was nearly the only way to have it quick. But when they will reach the 10k/week production rate, and finish the waiting list, it will suddently become much easier and faster to get a brand new Tesla, making the used one taking a terrible drop of value.

In general, Tesla cars hold their value as used cars far better than the average car. A car is an expense, not an investment, so “investing” in a car in the hopes it will retain its value is very unwise. But if you do choose to look at it that way, then by all means you should buy a Tesla rather than just about any other brand of car.

See, for example: “Why does a Tesla have such high resale value?”


The More Reason to buy a New “But Not So Loaded” M3 to keep the Price in check, Instead of a “Not Cheap” Loaded Used S with Lots more things to go wrong ….Unless Model S depreciated like a Cadillac that you could Buy a 2to3 Yr old for Less than Half The new Price…I would Stick with a Not Too Fancy “NEW” M3..

Great Deal? I Hope ? until all the Unknowns begin to surface. Buy a Car That Old & that Expensive To Fix ? The Only Good thing about this Car Will be the Free Charging for Life…