BMW i3

BMW i3

Edmunds noted high depreciation on its test 2014 BMW i3.

CarMax's offer of $26,000 was around 50% lower than the stated MSRP of $50,000 (before tax and title) for the new car bought one year ago.

Again, the depreciation rate shocks some of us. That is, until we include the federal tax credit of $7,500 and state incentives.

The effective price of new i3 was probably $7,500 or maybe $10,000 lower in California. Edmunds estimates that Carmax could sell the $26,000 i3 for $30,000. In other words, we should probably compare $40,000 spent for new BMW i3 and nearly $30,000 for used one. Whatever it is, it isn't even close to 50% depreciation.

"Edmunds trade-in True Market Value® estimates that our 2014 BMW i3 is worth about $30,875. There was only one i3 with a range extender for sale on CarMax's website (located in Austin, Texas). It had 2,000 more miles than ours, cloth seats (we have leather) and base wheels (we have the optional 20's). CarMax was asking $36,000.

I estimate that CarMax paid about $32,500 for it, given that it usually prices its cars at about $3,500 over the trade-in offer. Our i3 had fewer miles and more options. We stood to get at least $33,000, right? Wrong.

The offer came in at $26,000. For reference, we paid $50,000 (before tax and title) for the i3 when we bought it new last year. This was a depreciation of nearly 50 percent!"

The problem is that you could buy a new BMW i3 with BMW ChargeNow DC Fast - two year free charging promotion, for $40,000 (assuming $7,500 tax credit and $2,500 state incentive).

Who would chose a used BMW i3, without free public DC fast charging, to save only a few grand? That's why prices have to buy lower on used models.  A fact few residual estimate services seem to comprehend when calculating depreciation.

Source: Edmunds