Plug In America’s Used Electric Vehicle Buyer’s Guide
Thousands of electric vehicles (EVs) are entering the used vehicle market, creating an opportunity for consumers to enjoy their many benefits, including reduced fuel and maintenance costs, a smoother drive, and reduced air pollution. If you’re considering a used EV, here are some things to keep in mind.
- All-electric vehicles have fewer moving parts to break or fail, so the main drive train concern is the condition of the battery. You’ll also want to check on the tires, brakes, and general condition of the car.
- Plug-in hybrid vehicles do have internal combustion engine components, but they experience less wear and tear because of the miles driven on the electric motor.
- Ask an experienced EV mechanic or dealer to perform an on-board diagnostics check to measure the health of the battery. A used EV with a healthy battery is almost like a new car.
- A used EV with some battery degradation could meet your needs if it still has adequate range, so it is important to think about your driving requirements. For example, how far do you regularly drive and will this car be used for road trips?
- Most EVs come with battery warranties that last eight to ten years or more, so examine the warranty provisions of the vehicle carefully to see if you are protected against deterioration in battery range.
- EVs sold from franchise dealerships may be certified pre-owned and come with an extended factory warranty.
- Sometimes, these warranties may only cover battery failure and not capacity degradation.
Where to Purchase
- Used EVs can be purchased from franchised dealerships, used car dealers, or private sellers. Some dealers specialize in used EVs.
- As with any used vehicle, you may get a better price from a used car dealer or private seller, but the vehicle may be sold “as is” without a certified pre-owned warranty.
- Many state and local governments or electric utilities offer financial incentives on used EVs. Check PlugStar.com/incentives for more information on incentives in your area.