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EVs Facing Heavier Depreciation Than Gasoline Counterparts

August 05, 2015

File photo
File photo

Mainstream electric vehicles (EV) are depreciating much faster than their gas sister models, according to new data from Black Book.

Black Book editors looked at the prices of a new Nissan Leaf vs. Versa; a Mitsubishi i-MiEV vs. Lancer; Ford Focus Electric vs. Focus; and a Chevrolet Volt vs. Cruze.

The electric car premium over a counterpart gasoline model for mainstream brands has pretty much disappeared for used vehicles from an average premium of $16,600 for new vehicles. In fact, in several cases, a used electric model now costs less than its gasoline counterpart.

"On several of today's popular EV vehicles, the depreciation curve is very steep, largely driven by lack of consumer demand preferences for fuel-efficient models with current price of gas," said Anil Goyal, vice president of Automotive Valuation and Analytics for Black Book. "Smaller cars have experienced heavier depreciation over the last 12-18 months, but it’s clear that the small mainstream electric vehicles are experiencing even heavier valuation drops."

Black Book Valuation Data on EV vs. Gas Counterparts (2012 New vs. Used)

Vehicle 2012 NEW Equipped Retail Electric PremiumEffective Retail After Federal Incentive   2012 Used Avg (7/15/15)Electric PremiumThree-Year Retention*
Nissan Leaf SV 4d Hatchback $36,380        $20,287        $28,880 $7,400($900)26%
Nissan Versa SL 4D Hatchback$19,320  $19,320       $8,300 43%
Mitsubishi i-Miev ES 4D Hatchback$29,125$19,887$21,625$5,350($3,100)25%
Mitsubishi Lancer ES 4D Hatchback$19,720  $19,720$8,450 43%
Ford Focus Electric 4D Hatchback$40,387$9,405$32,887$10,250$1,15031%
Ford Focus SE 4D Hatchback$20,500 $20,500$9,100 44%
Chevrolet Volt 4D Hatchback$40,431$17,060$32,931$10,500$65032%
 Chevrolet Cruze LT 4D Sedan$20,144 $20,144$9,850 49%

 * Used value as percent of new effective retail after federal incentive.

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