Used EV prices decline 28% from July 2022

Since our April report, the used EV market has continued to see prices become more affordable for first-time buyers. The Recurrent Price Index, a collection of common used EVs, has declined 6.97% since Q1. Most of this change happened in May, right before prices in the overall used car market fell 4.2% in June. As CarDealershipGuy pointed out, this was the second highest monthly decline in history. 

Percent change in Recurrent Price Index month by month since April 2021

The chart above shows changes in the Recurrent Price Index, the price tracker for the used EV market segment which we have followed since April 2021. 

The models included in the 2023 Recurrent Price Index are:

Why Is This Happening? Part of the used car price declines are due to sales and price cuts for new cars, including federal and OEM incentives for EVs, which are bringing down the purchase price. As new cars become more affordable, demand for used cars softens, and prices do, too. As a reminder, during the height of the pandemic, there was a shortage of new cars, which put extra pressure and demand on the used market, driving up prices. As this unusual situation resolves, the price inflation in the used market should come down. 

“The unusual conditions of the past two years, extreme supply constraints and a very easy lending market, coincided with EVs becoming more mainstream. Now, more shoppers than ever want EVs but affordability, rather than supply, is the constraint. The market is price correcting to meet this demand.”

In addition to new incentives and refreshed supply for new cars, there is a big disparity between interest rates, with the industry averages being 6.07% for new cars and 10.26% for used cars. This is another factor that can make a used car cost as much as a new one. 

Tesla Still Drives Market Trends. Finally, the price changes in new and used Teslas are driving a lot of the EV market trends, since Teslas make up around 30% of the total used EVs available for purchase and 60% of new EV sales. As Tesla drops prices on new models to increase demand, the price for used models also falls. 

This is good news for the typical car buyer. There are now more affordable used EVs than ever before. Almost 40% of the used inventory is priced under $30K.

Almost 40% of used EV inventory under $40,000

Reason to watch this: Shoppers who want to take advantage of the first-ever federal incentives on used electric cars need to focus on vehicles priced near $25K.

In case you missed it, Recurrent also created a tax credit eligibility tool for EV shoppers. You can try it by entering a VIN from your local car dealership. That page is an excellent resource for used EV tax credits and consumer eligibility. 

Popular EVs depreciate at very different rates

In April, we revealed that using three year depreciation data, Teslas hold their value better than many luxury vehicles – including combustion vehicles. This is the chart from our last report.

Three year price depreciation for luxury models

This quarter, in light of all the price changes and discounts being offered on new Teslas, we’ve analyzed one-year price depreciation across all-electric models to uncover several interesting trends.

  1. Teslas hold their value - but not the 2022 model year. The Model 3 has lost around 30% of its value from the 2022 MSRP, the Model S has lost 27%, the Model X is down 24%, and the Model Y 23.5%. 
  1. Popular, inaugural models, such as those highlighted in our pre-order research, hold their value well over the first year of their release. The BMW i4 and the Ford F-150 Ford’s F150 Lighting actually appreciated in value, as compared to the average MSRP in 2022, which could also be influenced by the price point of models released first. 
  1. The small SUV and crossover models that have been available for several years make up most of the middle of the pack, losing 11-17% of their value from 2022 average MSRP. 
One year price depreciation for popular EVs

The chart above compares the average MSRP for 2022 models against their listing price today. Prices are blended across trim levels.  

Why Is This Happening? To make sense of the high depreciation in Teslas, take a look at what used Tesla prices have done since last year. They have dropped up to 30% year over year, making the depreciation from these new models quite reasonable.

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Used EV availability is regional

Recurrent published a map showing where various EV brands dominated the availability way back in 2021 when the used EV market was in its infancy. Although Teslas were most prominent across most states, the Northern States near the heart of the auto industry were strongholds for Chevrolets - the Volt and the Bolt EV, and several states along the eastern seaboard had large inventory of BMW i3

A lot has changed in two years.

  • Ford has established itself with popular new models. The Mach-E, in particular, saw meteoric markups over 2022, and has a lot of vehicles in resale inventory. 
  • The midwest remains a stronghold for US brands like Ford and GM.
  • BMW has fallen out of the top ten, at least for now until the iX and i4 hit the second-hand market. 
  • The Nissan LEAF is relatively easy to find in the often progressive, coastal states where you’d expect to find it.
  • And Volkswagen came out with the ID.4, which is still new enough to be rare in the used market, but is more common in two states. 
  • Tesla remains the biggest single player in the used EV market with 30% of inventory across the country. 

Here’s where to look for a particular brand of used EV today.

Used EV Availability by State

Read more about how EV trends vary state by state.

About this data

The data in Recurrent’s quarterly reports comes from our partner, Marketcheck. Since most states have used inventory dominated by Tesla, the image above shows states with large shares of other inventory. 

What’s new at Recurrent

Recurrent launched a new platform this year to help EV owners command higher trade-in values for cars with good batteries. The early results have been incredibly promising!

Recurrent has also partnered with wholesale companies to evaluate cars at auction. This makes the entire buying and selling process more transparent, and increases used EV sales. 

If you have questions for our team, please email us at

Previous Reports

Each quarter we publish a new report with the latest industry data. Browse this section to review previous reports and their findings.

Q2 2023

  • After two years of wild ups and downs, used EV prices are settling almost exactly where they were in April 2021. However, an influx of newer model-year vehicles into the second hand market keeps the average price market-wide around $38,000
  • Used Teslas hold value better than most luxury cars despite five rounds - and counting - of price cuts to the full lineup since January.
  • Metro areas with rapidly growing used EV markets share many characteristics: average commutes under 30 minutes, median age under 40 and median income in the mid-to-high $70K
Average Three Year Depreciation

Q1 2023

  • Used EV Market Triples in Size - the number of electric cars in inventory is not just a measure of a growing market. It also can indicate that vehicles are sitting longer on dealer lots, as a result of higher interest rates. 
  • Recurrent Price Index has fallen 17% from its July 2022 peak, driven by falling prices in the used Chevy Bolt and Tesla Model 3
  • The number of used EVs that are potentially eligible for a tax credit is up 30%
line chart showing the monthly inventory of dealer listings for used EVs

Q4 2022

  • Used EV prices are beginning to decline, albeit, slowly
  • Only 12% of used EVs would qualify for a used car tax credit today
  • Used plug-in hybrids will dominate tax credit eligibility early in the year
  • Market data suggests that 2017 and older model year EVs are most likely to be eligible for used EV tax credits in 2023

Q3 2022 Report

According to our inventory data, derived from over 50,000 car dealers, roughly one third of the estimated 158,689 total EV sales in Q1 2022 were used cars – official Q2 numbers are still pending. In fact, after new Tesla sales, used EVs make up the second largest portion of EV purchases.

Some other quick stats before we dive into the theme of the quarter:

  • The average price of used EVs in July 2022 was $40,714, well above the newly proposed $25,000 used EV tax credit limit.
  • 17.9% of used EV sales in the past 90 days were under $25,000.
  • The average minimum listing price for used EVs that Recurrent tracks (including lots of like-new 2022 "used" cars) is $29,400.

Read more about the Rise of the Used EV.

Q2 2022 Report

  • Higher used EV prices are the new normal
  • The rise of the "new" used car
  • Chevy Bolt battery replacements prove that calendar age matters
  • The Tesla Model 3 takeover is here
Electric vehicles appreciating between 2022 and 2021

Q1 2022 Report

  • It’s still a seller’s market for used EVs
  • Used EV prices are continuing to rise
  • Used EV prices still higher than used ICE prices
  • New Tesla price hikes in 2021 are causing used Tesla prices to soar
  • People are talking a lot about Tesla battery replacements

Q3 2021 Report

  • Compares climbing used EV prices to all used cars
  • Revisits the state of the used EV market six months after our first report
  • Determines the percent of used EV values below an important $25,000 price point
  • Monitors a significant contraction in used EV inventory by state

In July, both Recurrent sales data and national analyses suggested that used car prices were starting to level off. The past two months of price data is further evidence that the market has stabilized. For used EVs, we saw a 2.32% price increase in from July to August, and a 0.39% increase going into September. Meanwhile, the overall used car price index saw a decline of 1.5% from August to September, meaning that used EVs pricing outpaced the used combustion engine market. We will continue to track this trend after this year of anomalous pricing.

Despite the used car market leveling off, the ongoing semiconductor shortage is still affecting US automakers. Last week, GM announced that most US production would pause after Labor Day, and many other auto manufacturers foresee temporary layoffs and production slow downs. This suggests that although used EV prices may have stabilized, they will not go back down to pre-summer levels anytime soon. An EV can require ten times more semiconductors than an ICE car, so expect electric inventory to remain limited as buyers looking for new EVs compete with buyers in the used markets.

Our methodology to calculate the used EV price index is to use a representative sample of popular vehicles and compare national averages for retail prices. The models we included in our bundle are: 2017 BMW i3, Chevy Bolt, Tesla Model S; 2018 BMW 530e, Honda Clarity, 2018 Nissan LEAF; 2019 Audi e-tron, Tesla Model 3, VW e-Golf.

In March, Recurrent released its first used EV buying guide to highlight the growth of the market and report on trends that were not being covered by other automotive sources. Six months later, we have seen meteoric price increases, drastic inventory contractions, and a shift in what model years are most popular in inventory.

As of September 2021, over 48% of all used EVs in the US are under $25,000 and nearly 30% are under $20,000. The $20-$25K price range is the target for auto manufacturers looking to produce a mass market EV to win over everyday, budget-conscious drivers, as rumors of a Tesla Model 2 or Volkswagen ID.2 suggest. New EVs available for around $25K will inject the used market with a supply of reliable electric cars priced around $10-$15K in a few years, and attract new drivers to the electric market.

As reported in March, there had been an almost 50% increase in used EV inventory since summer 2020. However, since that report, the inventory number has dropped 21% despite a modest increase in the last 2 months. Supply has dropped at least 35% in top EV states since March. Both Oregon and Virginia lost over 63% of their inventory in six months. The only state that remained near constant was Tennessee, losing only a handful of total inventory since March. These numbers are consistent with the overall used car market, which saw unprecedented low inventory this summer.

Refreshing the used EV stock has been incredibly difficult with inventory shortages around the country, and dealerships are struggling to find cars to sell. This inventory shortage has several causes.

In part, it is due to the global semiconductor shortage, which is causing significant production delays in new cars. That has pushed shoppers to consider the used market. Since EVs require ten times the number of semiconductors as ICE cars, this is a strong effect in the used EV market.

Secondly, the market is still reeling from the pandemic: dealerships that initially scaled down their supply or offered deep discounts to move cars off their lots are now scrambling to replenish a fleeting inventory that is not being filled by rental car sellers or fleet vehicle turnover.

We can expect inventory to remain very tight through the end of 2021.

August 2021 Report

July 2021 Report

  • Used electric car retail prices in June continued to climb, but at a slightly slower pace, which could indicate the beginning of a market equilibrium being reached.
  • We looked at different brands to determine the most popular EV by state. Overall, Tesla continues to be the most popular used electric car brand, with 26% of the used market nationally.
  • The Chevy Bolt and Tesla Model 3 are two of the most popular all-electric vehicles on the road today. We did a Bolt vs Model 3 comparison to learn how their individual battery is aging across makes, models, years and climates.

June 2021 Report

  • Chevy Volt has found its way to the top of the used electric list by selling more than any other EV model. Combined with new Bolt sales in 2021, GM is having a very big year. Although there could be a surge in Model 3 inventory soon.
  • Used EV prices are still climbing. We recorded another 9% increase in average prices over the last 30 days.
  • Used Teslas sell faster than any other used EV. We reviewed the number of vehicle sales for various brands compared to the number in dealer inventory to arrive at a relative proxy of used car turnover. Tesla is way ahead.

May 2021 Report

  • Used EV prices have been soaring by $1000’s over the last few months -- driven up by high demand and the same chip shortages that are hindering the new vehicle market.
  • There’s incredible price volatility from state to state. We’re seeing $3000 - $6000 price differences for the same vehicles across state lines.
  • The used Tesla ecosystem is such a big part of the overall used EV market that it makes sense to look at how that’s evolving. itself is a player, but it only represents 7% of the used Tesla inventory, a far cry from its complete control of new Tesla sales.

State by State Pricing Shows Huge Variability for Popular EV Models

Like many things, used EV prices vary from state to state. There isn’t a hard and fast rule about where EVs are more expensive, including the biggest EV states like California, but there is a very wide range in the prices for popular models state to state. It’s common to see a $5,000 spread between the least and most expensive states.

Drilling into the Used Tesla Market: Lots of Choices

Does the direct-to-consumer sales model hold for pre-owned Teslas? We found that only 7% of today’s used Tesla listings are on

April 2021 Report

  • From last month, the overall trend in the used EV market is a decrease in inventory - in particular, GMs, Teslas, and Fiats are being bought up faster than their stock can be replenished. Dealerships across the country are noting inventory shortages on used vehicles in general -- as an indirect result of slower-than-expected new vehicle manufacturing.
  • Despite these recent decreases, March inventory is still 37% higher than July 2020 signaling increased interest in used EVs.
  • 2018 models have now surpassed 2017 models as the most popular used EVs on the market.

BMW Leads Used EV Market

Last month, we saw Teslas hold their place as the most common used EV on the market. However, the used stock of almost all EVs decreased through March - except for BMW. Perhaps it’s anticipation for the forthcoming i4, or delivery of new i3s, but there has been an increase in the availability of used 530e’s, 330e’s, and the X5 - xDrive40e. If you’ve been keeping your eye on one of these models, it may be a good time to check prices, as the average has dipped slightly in the past month. Used i3’s, on the other hand, continue to retain their value and even showed slight price increases, with 2018s being the best represented year in the market and 2017s at their heels.

Examining Cost per EPA Range Mile

One way to look at used EV prices is by comparing cost per range mile using EPA estimated range. One thing to keep in mind is that EPA range specifies how far your EV will go when the battery is new. EV batteries degrade based on age, how they have been driven, and how they have been stored. To really understand the value of an EV, it is critical to understand the battery in its current state, after several summers in the driveway or several hundred charging cycles.

March 2021 Report

Seasonality exists in used car sales and due to COVID-related economic changes, but this trend is real. Used car sales follow a predictable time delay, peaking at 3-4 years after being sold new. This pattern exists in electric vehicles as well: Six months ago, the most common model year for sale in used EVs was 2017 by far. Now, there are nearly as many 2018 model year used EVs for sale as 2017’s.

The Most Popular Used Electric Cars in March

  • Used Tesla Model S, Model 3 and Model X are a large and growing part of the used electric market.
  • BMW EVs are a surprisingly strong part of used EV inventories, but it’s not the i3’s that are growing in supply. Instead, there’s been a surge of the availability of BMW’s plug-in hybrids (5-Series 550e, 3-series 330e and the X5 xDrive40e) in the last 6 months.
  • Despite the Nissan Leaf being one of the most recognizable EVs on the road for years, it’s only the 4th most popular used EV for sale today.

How do older EV batteries hold up?

EV owners and shoppers perceive that EV batteries last just seven years (Cox Automotive study), but the reality is generally better. A lot of factors play into the battery life of each EV over its life, including manufacturing variances, pack layouts and cooling systems, calendar age, use, temperature history, charging behavior. In our data analysis of 1000’s of EVs on the road, we’ve found that odometer reading alone isn’t particularly helpful in understanding each vehicle’s battery life.