Why do some used models sell for more than new?

If you’re looking for used Teslas, especially Model 3s and Model Ys, you may have seen this phenomenon.

Last year, in France, the Tesla Model 3 managed to dethrone the Renault Zoé in the first place in the ranking of the best-selling electric cars. Quite a coup de force on the part of the American sedan, which notably benefited from a relatively low call price for a car in this segment, thanks to the ecological bonus in particular.

Thus, the basic models, whose autonomy is already largely sufficient for most motorists, traded around 36,800 euros once the bonus has been deducted.

Skyrocketing prices

But a few months ago, everything changed. Prices have increased significantly, and in France the Model 3 is no longer available with the maximum bonus of 6,000 euros, its starting price having exceeded the threshold of 45,000 euros. Therefore, for a Model 3 today, it will be at least 47,990 euros (bonus of 2,000 euros deducted), or an increase of nearly 11,000 euros in a few months.

To make matters worse, the shortage of semiconductors and the war in Ukraine lead to supply problems. The deadlines have therefore lengthened and, for an order placed today for a Model 3 or a Model Y, delivery is not expected before February 2023.

Ever-increasing demand at Tesla

So many reasons that push customers to turn to the second-hand market. Except that it’s obviously taken by storm, and sellers are taking advantage of the exponential demand to drive up prices… sometimes even beyond new. A phenomenon that could be seen on cars sold in limited edition, such as at Porsche or Ferrari for example, but in no case from a generalist manufacturer, and even less on the best-selling electric car in France in 2021.

And this trend is not unique to France. Our American colleagues from Electrek show several examples, such as a Model Y displaying 24,000 km sold almost $10,000 more expensive than a new model. This is also the case for a 2020 Model 3 with 48,000 km on the odometer which is sold $1,000 more than the new version.

In France, there is another particular phenomenon on the used Tesla market. Indeed, some companies specializing in the import/export of cars have taken advantage of the bonus system to resell, from 6 months, a Model 3 to other countries which do not have aid and, consequently, a lower price. This allowed these companies to make nice capital gains.

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