If there weren't already enough reasons to buy an electric car, and more specifically, a used EV, now is arguably a better time than any. According to Recurrent, the used EV market in the US has tripled in size in just 18 months, prices have come down significantly, and people are taking notice. Inventory will likely fade fast, especially as more buyers realize that there's also a $4,000 tax credit for pre-owned EVs in the US.
Used car prices have been at record highs for many months now. This came as new car inventory dwindled and new car prices increased. However, when everyone seemed to flock to buy a used car, prices rose, used vehicle inventory also dropped, and people didn't have many options. The prospects were even worse when it came to sought-after models, including EVs. People were actually paying more for used versions than the current MSRP for a new model.
Recurrent notes that based on the data in its Price Index, used EV prices have dropped some 17% from their peak. The publication shares that used electric car prices were at their highest in July 2022. The average price of a pre-owned EV was nearly 30% higher in July 2022 than in April 2021.
Recurrent tracks the following pre-owned models in its Price Index:
2017 Chevrolet Bolt
2018 Nissan LEAF
2018 Toyota Prius Prime
2019 Tesla Model 3
2019 Chevrolet Volt
2020 Tesla Model Y
2020 Hyundai Kona EV
2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E
It notes that best-selling used electric models like the Chevrolet Bolt EV and Tesla Model 3 have worked to drive the prices back to reality.
The used EV market in the US has tripled in size since Recurrent started tracking data 18 months ago. The publication writes:
“The used EV market is now higher volume than any new EV model’s sales besides Tesla Model 3 and Y. It’s time to take this seriously.”
While this growth is good news, inventory could fade fast, especially if prices continue to drop. If you're considering a used EV, you may want to begin a serious search sooner rather than later.
Added to this, Recurrent points out that the pool of used electric vehicles that are eligible for a tax credit is up 66%, meaning as many as 30% of all used EVs may be eligible now.
The US didn't offer an EV tax credit for used models in the past, and many people may not yet be aware of it. There are several details and rules you'll need to go over and understand, but you could get up to $4,000 back if you buy a used EV from a certified dealer.
To find out if the used car you're considering may qualify, you can try Recurrent's tax credit eligibility tool.
Have you ever bought a used electric car? Are you currently in the market for one? Share your stories with us in our comment section below. As EV fans, owners, and advocates, we should help others navigate the segment, and helping people take advantage of the information available in articles like this is certainly a solid start.