Electric cars lose their value so quickly

Constantly new electric cars, better technology, larger batteries: This doesn’t bode well for the old models. Data from a market observer shows how quickly they lose value.

The loss of value– one of the major weaknesses of electric cars. Above all, three points fail the Stromer on the residual value balance:

  • New models are getting better and better , their batteries are more powerful, with the charging time shorter.
  • They are also cheaper than their predecessors.
  • And the state environmental bonus reduces the purchase price considerably.

In short: A new electric car is much more tempting than an old one. A used Stromer can therefore only be sold if it is offered at a significantly lower price than its modern and inexpensive successor. This is why electric cars have a reputation for simply suffering from depreciation. But is that still the case? Pass Away Deutsche Automobil Treuhand (DAT) has current figures.

According to this, the residual values ​​have stabilized after an interim low in mid-2021 — albeit at a rather low level: after three years, used electric cars are gone currently worth about half their new price. According to the market observer, the residual value has been stable at around 55 percent since spring.

Nevertheless, electric cars continue to lose value faster than petrol and Diesel : After three years, their residual values ​​are still an average of 67.7 percent and 65.1 percent respectively (calculated for three-year-old cars with a mileage of 15,000 to 20,000 km per year ).

But then the rapid loss of value is over: In the fourth and fifth year, the value goes by around 3,000 euros return. This shows an analysis of the car exchange Mobile.de

What the Loss in value accounts for

In general, the rule of thumb is: The more popular a new car is, the lower its loss in value, because such models are also very popular as used cars. A very expensive and therefore also very rare Ferrari therefore loses value much more slowly than a Golf , as it stands in front of almost every door.

But with the right equipment you can at least contain the depreciation — and with the wrong equipment you can increase it immensely.

  • Popular models, popular features: they protect against excessive depreciation. A small car, for example, should be economical and cheap — and rather not be equipped with the 400 hp top engine. On the other hand, hardly anyone wants to buy a luxury model with a somewhat underpowered basic engine.
  • Muted colors are in demand: blue, gray and black dominate Germany’s parking lots. You will probably only be able to sell a very flashy car, for example in yellow or red, at a great loss– unless you drive the Ferrari mentioned.
  • The following applies to equipment: The higher the vehicle segment, the more extras should be on board. Many optional extras only make the small car unnecessarily expensive– they should not be missing from the already expensive upper-class model.


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