Second hand electric cars – what to look out for
Range, or how far you can drive between charges, is improving in electric cars all of the time. If you mainly drive short distances, and have easy access to charge, the range of a used electric car may not be an issue for you. However, some drivers are waiting for the average range to creep up a bit higher before they switch to an EV.
The time it takes to charge an electric car is also a factor. As battery technology advances, and newer models reach the market, charging times will continue to come down. If you’re thinking of buying a used electric car try to ensure the vehicle you buy will stand the test of time.
Most new electric cars have warranties on the battery for about seven or eight years so, if you are buying a second-hand EV, check how much of the warranty is still in place. While all batteries will lose some of their range, per charge, over a period of time this is not likely to have much impact on a two or three-year-old used electric car.
The Renault Zoe avoids battery ageing issues altogether by allowing customers to lease the battery separately from the rest of the vehicle.
How much do used electric cars cost?
As with any type of car, there are huge variances in used electric car prices according to the make, model and age of the vehicle.
If you’re willing to go for an older Nissan Leaf you could pick up a six-year-old used electric car for under £10,000. A 2019 ex-demonstrator electric Golf is likely to be in the mid 20k range. Some newer used Tesla models could cost up to three times that amount.
Buying a used car checklist
- Set your budget and get your finances in order.
- Think about mileage – does the mileage seem right for the age of the car?
- Find out as much as you can about the history of the vehicle.
- Remember to check how much warranty is left on the battery.
- Keep your eyes open – check the car from every angle for any signs of damage or wear-and-tear.
- If you’re new to electric cars, try to test drive a couple of brand new models before going to see a second-hand EV, to give you an idea of how an electric vehicle feels and handles.
Our best advice is to weigh up all of your options. If you want to keep up with the latest electric car technology, but can’t afford to buy a brand new EV, you might want to consider leasing an electric vehicle.