It's a well-known fact that electric cars require much less maintenance than ICE or hybrid vehicles. Simply put, EVs are much less complex and therefore there are fewer things that can go wrong. But just how much cheaper is it to own an EV? Last May, YouTuber Cleanerwatt uploaded a video to YouTube, comparing a Tesla Model 3 to a Honda Accord Hybrid.
Cleanerwatt compared both cars across a 5-year, 75,000-mile ownership cycle. But nearly a year later, prices have changed significantly, so it's worth taking a second look at this price comparison.
For the purchase price, it's important to note that a base Tesla Model 3 comes far more equipped than a base Honda Accord. We'll be using the EX-L and Touring trims for this comparison. A 2023 Honda Accord Hybrid EX-L costs $34,635 and the more highly-equipped Touring trim's price is $38,985. Meanwhile, the Model 3 starts at $44,380 in RWD guise. Though, the Tesla Model 3 currently qualifies for the $7,500 federal tax credit until the end of March.
Per the EPA, the Model 3 will cost around $550 to run per annum. Meanwhile, the Accord will set you back between $1,050 and $1,150 depending on trim level. All figures are for 15,000 miles.
Although it can vary widely, a previous model year (2022) Accord will cost you $4,095 to maintain over a 5-year period per data from Edmunds. Meanwhile, the Model 3 will set you back around $2,169.
The Model 3 RWD has an 8-year, 100,000-mile battery/powertrain warranty and a 4-year, 50,000-mile basic warranty. The Accord Hybrid has an 8-year, 100,000-mile battery warranty, a 5-year, 60,000-mile powertrain warranty, and a 3-year, 36,000-mile general warranty.
According to Cleanerwatt, a 2017 Model 3 LR has, on average, lost around 35% of its value meanwhile a 2017 Accord Touring has lost approximately 42% of its value. Data was not provided for the latest Model 3 RWD trim, which was not available in 2017.
Factoring in all of the above, the cost of ownership (excluding insurance, repairs, financing, and taxes) for a Model 3 RWD is $20,452 ($0.27 per mile) meanwhile total cost for an Accord Hybrid EX-L is $23,892 ($0.32 per mile) while the Accord Hybrid Touring comes in at $26,219 ($0.35 per mile). Factoring in the federal tax credit (and providing the owner can take full advantage of it), the Model 3's total cost comes down to $12,952 ($.17 per mile). In all likely scenarios, the Model 3 tends to be cheaper to operate, despite the high initial cost.
Source: Cleanerwatt (YouTube)