Sales Of Used Electric Vehicles Nearly Double In UK


2011 Nissan LEAF

2011 Nissan LEAF

Mitsubishi i-MiEV

Mitsubishi i-MiEV – Photo Definitely Not Taken In The UK

Experian Automotive UK has made public some data which shows that the “more economical and greener electric and hybrid vehicles are becoming more popular in the used car market,” according to Fleet News.

More specifically, Fleet News reports the following:

“Used electric car sales rose by 47.10% and hybrid used car sales rose by 24.16% compared to the same period last year (Q1 2013).”

So, the used EV market appears to be heating up in the UK.

Andrew Ballard, principal consultant for Experian Automotive, stated:

“Whilst low in number in absolute terms, we have undoubtedly seen an increase in electric and hybrid vehicles in new car sales, over the past few years.”

“This has been encouraged by not only the vehicles’ known benefits, such as zero or minimal emissions and their exemption from road tax; but by the government subsidies given to drivers upon purchase.”

“However electric vehicles tend to suffer from higher levels of depreciation according to the UK valuation guides, this is likely to be due to in part to the subsidy impact when new, which makes them exceptionally good value for money vehicle in the second hand market.”

Buy a used EV…save a lot of cash.  As the electric vehicle market ages, there will no doubt be deals to be found on all models, so the only difficult choice will be in deciding which used EV is right for you.  Or in choosing old versus new.

Source: Fleet News

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13 Comments on "Sales Of Used Electric Vehicles Nearly Double In UK"

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Yeah, it is going to be very interesting now that used EVs are going to start hitting market big time. All those early Leaf & Volt leases are ending. And EVs have an instant $7500 price-drop as soon as you sign the paperwork due to the federal tax-credit such that used market will have lots of lower cost cars that don’t require large taxable income to take advantage of.

A lot of people without long-distance driving needs could slash their gasoline usage by picking up an used EV.

The big mistake has been the $7500 tax offset instead of a rebate; the full credit can be applied to a lease up front; but, can only be used as a tax offset if you buy the car. This forces many to lease the car and will flood the used car market, leading to lower resale values.

However, even with lower prices, I don’t recommend buying a three year old, used EV unless you factor in the price of a replacement traction battery. On a Leaf that’s $5,500 plus tax and installation

It is not a mistake, it is the only way you can sell such an incentive politically. A tax-credit is not direct government subsidy . . . it is just telling a person that they can keep a little more of their own money.

And flooding the market with cheap used EVs is great IMHO . . . it refutes the oft-heard claim that the tax-credit only helps rich people. This is the way it trickles down to more people.

And I don’t see any problems with a 3 year old EV. There have been Leafs & Model S cars with over a 100K miles and still running fine on their original batteries. Do you factor in the cost of a new transmission, engine, radiator, muffler, clutch, etc. when you buy a used gas car?

Those are all excellent points.

Yes; it is a mistake because if you buy an EV you need to earn enough to pay in excess of $7500 in taxes to get the full offset. That means a lot of lower wage people can’t afford it. The subsidy should allow the maker to increase the cost of the car by $7500. and be indirectly paid by the Feds through any buyer. A rebate would increase sales by allowing more people to buy the car. I own a 2011 Leaf, #669, and my range is about 60 miles in the foothills of California. I dare not push it further; that’s not nearly enough when I vary from a predetermined plan of power usage. And, therein is the rub. My car still has low mileage; however, I can tell the battery is wearing because the first bar goes away within the first mile of driving. I expect as the battery ages it will follow Nissan’s predicted course of deterioration, i.e., spent at 8 years. Quit frankly, I speak against buying an EV in today’s market. I would wait until there is a better battery to provide a solid range improvement at a reasonable price. I think Tesla will… Read more »

There are lots of Volts with over 140K miles that have no significant battery degradation. Also, the second generation lizard battery from Leaf should increase life of its battery pack.

GM’s engineering decision to “hide” any battery degradation through underutilization is turning out to be quite useful for reducing battery fears.

Of course a 15 year old Volt with a dead battery is still a useful vehicle whereas a BEV would not be without replacement.

That’s going the be the challenge for used EVs, especially those without thermal protection like the Leaf. If the used price deducted the Fed tax rebate, along with any state rebate, along with a prorated portion of the $6k necessary to replace the battery pack, then a used Leaf would be a deal. Looking at the one Official 100k mile Leaf in an earlier report, in the moderate temperature of Washington state, the Leaf lost 17% of capacity at 78k miles. Which should be the difference between making it to work or not. And unlike an ICE vehicle, you can’t get a tune up or replace a part for a few $100 dollars and keep going. It’s a set in stone $6k nut that has to be paid. Nissan created that battery replacement/swap deal out there because they know that no one want’s to buy a Leaf with ‘any’ battery capacity loss, and have a $6k repair bill in their future. “…And back in June, that total had climbed to 78,000 miles. The car has been incredibly reliable, but in June it did lose its first battery capacity bar on the display–with around 17 percent degradation in capacity. “

There is a whole class of owners with short commutes. I’ve had a two mile commute, also an eight mile highway commute. Either one a very easy ride for a used Leaf.

My mother was a school teacher and had a five mile commute forever till she retired. Managed some 3K miles per year. People like that don’t spend a lot on cars and are ideal for cheap used EVs. Totally different market from first hand owners.

You mean a whole class of owners with a short commutes that probably own an ICE vehicle to use for the longer trips they take when not commuting.

Owning a Leaf as your sole vehicle is a very difficult proposition, and a very small niche of car buyers.

Or they could spend under $10, get themselves a used compact, and spend under $1000 per year on gas and maintenance. 3 mile commutes are the ones ripe for shifts to altern a tive transportation rather tha electric cars.

“And unlike an ICE vehicle, you can’t get a tune up or replace a part for a few $100 dollars and keep going. It’s a set in stone $6k nut that has to be paid.”

Uh . . . where do you get that from? I’d suspect that a good repair person could replace some of the weakest cells/modules for a few hundred bucks and boost the capacity of the batter back up a few percent.

It is not an all or nothing thing.

The UK like most places in Europe has the rebate directly at point of sale, not as a tax rebate, so these figures on resale reflect that.