Best used car value on the market
April 9, 2019
I would consider myself to be a car enthusiast. My last car was an E90 BMW 328i. Last year I test drove two EVs - the Tesla Model 3 and the BMW i3. I came away so disoriented by the immediate torque/acceleration and the sheer quietness as it was doing so. I was sold on EVs being fun. Then came the cost question.
Tesla model 3 doesn’t have much of a used car market yet as it is so new, but the i3 does. As I dug in I realized a 3-4 year old i3 was being sold for about 30% of its sticker price with lowish mileage (20k-50k miles) - I started digging some more.
On average, I was spending about $250/month on gas and after doing some calculations on my commute and monthly car use, I realized I would be spending about $20/month if I charged the car at home. Done - Started the search for an i3 and found one about 70 miles from my house. I traded my 3series for the i3. I’m so glad I did.
You can find all the specs on the car so I won’t bore you with that, but this is such an amazing value of a car. The practical hatchback design makes it easy for loading things in and out. The range is enough for my commute and we just use my wife’s car if we need to road trip somewhere. The term range anxiety does exist but I would rather call it range awareness. Driving an EV is a lifestyle change and makes you approach your use of a car differently. Some see that as a bad thing - I just see it as an opportunity to use your brain :-).
I know when most people think of a used BMW, they think it’s unreliable. Mechanically, these cars are SO simple and the things that typically go wrong in BMWs (gaskets, coil packs, spark plugs, turbos, water pumps, etc.), aren’t present in this car.
Sure the EV infrastructure is lagging in the US, but with a little planning and the use of the PlugShare app, you can find somewhere around you to charge in a pinch.
If you’re reading this, you are probably a bit like me - a car junky that likes to understand the good and the bad about a car before you take the leap. I would encourage you - DO IT!