Pros and Cons of Buying Used Electric Cars


Used cars electricemit no tailpipe pollutants, so buying a used one reduces your environmental footprint. Plus, the motors in most EVs are more energy efficient than those in gas-powered cars, so you’ll also save money on fuel costs.


A battery that degrades significantly can cost $10,000 to replace, but federal rules mandate that EV batteries come with an eight-year or 100,000-mile warranty, so lightly used models probably still have some coverage left. As with all used car purchases, it’s smart to get a thorough inspection from a dealer or certified technician before you seal the deal.

EVs have fewer moving parts than traditional vehicles, so they tend to require less maintenance. Plus, the motors convert electricity into motion more efficiently, so a used electric vehicle may feel more stable and quieter than a similar gas-powered model.

When deciding which used car to buy, consider the manufacturer’s estimated range for that model. Some EVs, such as Teslas, update their maximum range with each software update, while other brands have a hard cap on the original range for each model year. If possible, look up the original range for the model you’re considering on its website before you visit a dealership, and ask the seller if it comes with faster charging capability.

Lower odometer readings are another plus, as they should indicate that more of the original battery capacity and remaining warranty remain. On the other hand, if an EV’s odometer shows an unusually low number of miles for its age, that could indicate that the battery has been degraded by excessive usage or prolonged exposure to high temperatures.

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