Electric cars lose their value so quickly

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

The loss of value – one of the major weaknesses of the electric car. Three points in particular ruin the residual value balance for the Stromer:

  • New models are getting better and better, their batteries more powerful and charging times shorter.
  • On top of that, they are cheaper than their predecessors.
  • And the state environmental bonus reduces the purchase price considerably.

In short: a new electric car is much more attractive 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 suffering severe depreciation. But is that still the case? 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 currently worth around half their new price. The residual value has been stable at around 55 percent since the spring, according to the market observer.

Nevertheless, electric cars continue to depreciate faster than petrol and diesel engines: 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 drops by around 3,000 euros. This shows an analysis of the car exchange

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What accounts for the depreciation

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

But with the right equipment, you can at least curb the loss in value – and with the wrong equipment, you can increase it immensely.

  • Popular models, popular features: they protect against excessive depreciation. A small car shouldn’t have 400 hp – and vice versa, nobody wants to buy a luxury model with the basic engine.
  • Muted colors are in demand. You will often only be able to sell a yellow or red car at a great loss – unless you drive a Ferrari.
  • When it comes to equipment, the following applies: the higher the vehicle segment, the more extras should be on board.



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