If you’re in the market for an electric-hybrid vehicle, now is the time to hit your local dealer because the prices of these cars are nearing a rock bottom. The Wall Street Journal invites us to explore why these hot commodities three years ago are now holding minimum value in the marketplace.
The current system simply doesn’t encourage the sale of a pre-owned electric vehicle, first and foremost. The $7,500 government tax credit on a new model entices buyers to purchase or lease a new vehicle. In the eyes of consumers, new is always better than “pre-owned.” The report cites worries of long-term maintenance costs too, as the Chevrolet Volt steps out of its warranty, and things like expensive batteries must be replaced.
Not only do repairs have consumers backing off the idea of owning a used Volt, or another electric vehicle offering, but gas is also significantly cheaper than when these models hit dealers. From only four years ago, the price of gas has fallen 33 percent from a national average of $3.51 per gallon to $2.34 per gallon, according to AAA.
Now, dealers are unsure what they’re going to do with the surplus of used Volts and Leafs being turned in. 49 percent of Volts registered in 2014 were leases. For the Nissan Leaf? 85 percent. NADA is estimating 25,000 Chevrolet Volts and Nissan Leafs (Leaves?) will enter the used car market this year and data shows a $4,000 to $6,000 drop from what the cars were estimated to be valued at.
Don’t be surprised to see Chevrolet Volts with sub-$20,000 price tags is the take away from all of this.
Of course, the problem may be further accentuated with the introduction of the 2016 Chevrolet Volt. Any serious buyer will most certainly wait for newly designed Volt, or even hold out for the Chevrolet Bolt, which GM has committed to building. For now, only time will tell, and many other factors such as gas prices may turn used electric vehicles into a hot-ticket item once again.