WILK
Posts: 9
Joined: Wed Jan 04, 2017 8:40 am

Used Leaf Future Depreciation

Wed Jan 04, 2017 9:05 am

Hi Everyone - New member and first time poster. I have to sell my current ICE car and currently have an early-ish reservation for the Tesla Model 3 (which I am sure is a curse word on this site) which I expect to take delivery during Q2/Q3 2018. I found some very low priced used 2013/2014 Leafs in my area (SoCal) and am trying to figure out what to do for a car for the next 18-24 months. I went to a local Nissan dealer over the weekend just to learn more about Leafs (other than what I have learned on these forums) and the guy basically told me that a used Leaf will essentially be worthless by the time I would be going to sell it, which I have to take with a grain of salt considering he was trying to sell me a lease. Knowing that there will be Leaf fan-boy bias here, what would you do given this scenario?

Buy a used Leaf - 2013 or 2014 Leaf S, lease return, 11/12 bars, 30-40k miles, out the door for less than $7500 including taxes/fees. I know about Leafspy and the ODBII. Sometime in mid 2018 i would be selling my used Leaf, then 4-5 years old with approximately 40-50k miles. This scenario, out of pocket I would be out $5k, minus whatever I could sell it for in 2018, which at this point is a huge question mark for me. Flexibility in that I could sell the Leaf whenever my Tesla arrives

Lease a new Leaf for 24 months - approximately $3-$4k out of pocket (after the equity from selling my car) that would just be gone, and I would be forced to keep the car for the entire 24 month period

Lease a super cheap ICE car - approximately $2-$3k out of pocket (after the equity from selling my car) that would just be gone, and I would be forced to keep the car for the entire 24 month period

Drive my Father-in-Law's 20 year old dirty gas-guzzling SUV with no A/C or heat or functioning radio, save about $500 based on my current car's equity.

With Leafs prices falling drastically over the past few years, how much more are they going to fall? The breakeven point for buying a used Leaf vs leasing would be that I would have to be able to sell the Leaf in 2018 for somewhere around $2-$3k, but I would hope that I could get more and reduce my out of pocket expense. What do you think?

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DuncanCunningham
Forum Supporter
Posts: 367
Joined: Thu Mar 26, 2015 10:02 am
Delivery Date: 15 Apr 2015
Location: Bountiful, UT

Re: Used Leaf Future Depreciation

Wed Jan 04, 2017 9:14 am

WILK wrote:currently have an early-ish reservation for the Tesla Model 3 (which I am sure is a curse word on this site)
Not at all we love all EVs, we are just here because we HAVE a Nissan version. I'm going to continue to read the rest of your post.

Depends upon what you need for a car. Can you drive a EV that can do only 40 miles on a charge? Do you have access to 220V charging at home or work?

If I was only needing 40 miles per day, i'd buy a used Leaf. Choose your vintage.. 2011-2012 or 2013 onward for extra features and decide which model of each year.. they are not all the same. I have a 2012 SL but later models have things a SL had in 12 that are standard on a 2015 S and so on. I assume you'll not need much heat from the car since you're in SouthCal but you will use A/C some days.

If you need the full range only a new car can give you, then you an sink money and do a 2 or 3 yr lease.. you are in the best state to get them.. check out the 'END OF LEASE Strategies' posts, lots of deals listed in the last few pages of people taking up the 2016 models with great numbers I am jealous of.
Statler: Wake up you old fool. You slept through the show.
Waldorf: Who's a fool? You watched it.

2015 Leaf S (leased until May 2018, Bought out in Jan 2017)
2012 Leaf SL (purchased May 2015)

Bob
Posts: 285
Joined: Fri May 24, 2013 7:13 pm
Delivery Date: 30 May 2013
Location: New Hampshire

Re: Used Leaf Future Depreciation

Wed Jan 04, 2017 10:27 am

One question you are asking is a prediction on Leaf selling price 2 years from now. No one can accurately predict the future.

We do know that:
1) EVs depreciate more than ICEs early in the cycle but depreciation seems to slow down.
2) At $7500, the Leaf is already depreciated quite significantly.
3) Southern California tends to be warmer than other places, so the battery will degrade faster.
4) The Leaf has many aluminum body panels, so may not rust out as fast as a steel car.
5) Today, new batteries are approx $6K if you turn in your old battery.
6) Newer models will have more features. For example, starting 2013, they have a heat pump for more efficient heating.
7) Newer models may or may not have more range.

Bob

BillHolz
Posts: 64
Joined: Tue Sep 27, 2016 6:32 am
Delivery Date: 07 May 2016
Leaf Number: 322345
Location: Norfolk, VA

Re: Used Leaf Future Depreciation

Wed Jan 04, 2017 12:28 pm

Since you are looking at 2013 or 2014 Leaf's and want to have an idea of price a year or two later, look at the prices of 2011 and 2012. A 2011 in CA seems to go for about $5K now.
2015 SV no QC

powersurge
Posts: 581
Joined: Wed Oct 21, 2015 10:24 am
Delivery Date: 06 Dec 2014
Location: Long Island, NY

Re: Used Leaf Future Depreciation

Wed Jan 04, 2017 12:42 pm

If you are looking to buy a car to only keep it 2 years and drive only 10-20K miles, then forget about a Leaf, any Leaf. Buy a cheap car and plug away..

Or drive your relative's old SUV. You should never buy a new or close to new car (especially a Leaf) and be worrying about depreciation before you even buy a car.

When you want to invest in a Leaf for the long haul (4+ years), then buy one.

OLD INDIAN SAYING (about buying a car) - "It will cost more than you think, and you will get back less than you think".

LeftieBiker
Posts: 6126
Joined: Wed May 22, 2013 3:17 am
Delivery Date: 31 May 2013
Location: Upstate New York, US

Re: Used Leaf Future Depreciation

Wed Jan 04, 2017 12:58 pm

4) The Leaf has many aluminum body panels, so may not rust out as fast as a steel car.


That's only the 2011-2012 version. Leafs don't seem to rust a lot, but you do get rust under the hood and on the underbody.

My take is that if you want to buy a car now and then sell it easily for nearly what you paid for it, don't get a Leaf. Maybe a Corolla... If you want an EV that will cost about a grand a year, find a 10 bar Leaf that's cheap, treat it gently, and then sell it for $2k less than you paid.
2013 "Brilliant Silver" SV with Premium Package and no QC, and 2009 Vectrix VX-1 with 18 Leaf cells.

The most offensive, tasteless phrase in use here is "Pulled the trigger." I no longer respond to posts that use it.

tattoogunman
Posts: 91
Joined: Tue Jun 07, 2016 6:17 pm
Delivery Date: 08 Jun 2016
Location: Plano, Texas

Re: Used Leaf Future Depreciation

Wed Jan 04, 2017 1:29 pm

Depreciation is a subject sore to my heart at the moment due to my current car (Fiat 500). I have a 2012 Fiat 500 and its current value is only around $3500 which, to me at any rate, is horrible. Based off of the Leaf models that I have been looking at, they are suffering a similar fate. I just got home from test driving a '14 S with 21K miles on it that was for sale for $7500 and you have to figure that was a what? $30,000 car or thereabouts? They had a SL model for (leather, Bose, etc.) for $10K and that was what? A mid thirty thousand dollar car? They had a 2015 that sold before I got there and it was something like $10,200 and it's only a year old. Given those kinds of numbers, there is absolutely NO way I would spend $30K to $40K on a new Leaf when it's only going to be worth $7500 or so the next year, especially when there are so many out there used for cheap and with low miles.

So I would advise against a Leaf and if you have a free car you can use for two years, go for that and save up additional money towards the car you really want. Frankly, I wasn't overly blown away by the Leaf I drove today and given what I experienced today, I would be hard pressed to justify this car's new price (purely a personal opinion) anyway.

WILK
Posts: 9
Joined: Wed Jan 04, 2017 8:40 am

Re: Used Leaf Future Depreciation

Wed Jan 04, 2017 1:47 pm

Thanks everyone, your responses have been very valuable. With a used Leaf I am just trying to get a gauge (obviously no one can predict the future) of what the approximately residual value will be in 2018. If I can sell the car for like $2k less than I bought it for (aside from the taxes, etc) it would be good for my situation. If the depreciation continues at the same rate, and my $6500 Leaf is now worth $2k in 2018, then I would have to go in another direction.

LeftieBiker
Posts: 6126
Joined: Wed May 22, 2013 3:17 am
Delivery Date: 31 May 2013
Location: Upstate New York, US

Re: Used Leaf Future Depreciation

Wed Jan 04, 2017 2:25 pm

I don't think a $6500 Leaf would depreciate to less than $4k in 2 years unless the range fell to under 30 miles.
2013 "Brilliant Silver" SV with Premium Package and no QC, and 2009 Vectrix VX-1 with 18 Leaf cells.

The most offensive, tasteless phrase in use here is "Pulled the trigger." I no longer respond to posts that use it.

tattoogunman
Posts: 91
Joined: Tue Jun 07, 2016 6:17 pm
Delivery Date: 08 Jun 2016
Location: Plano, Texas

Re: Used Leaf Future Depreciation

Wed Jan 04, 2017 4:12 pm

LeftieBiker wrote:I don't think a $6500 Leaf would depreciate to less than $4k in 2 years unless the range fell to under 30 miles.


Why not? I'm already seeing one year old 2015's for sale for $10K or less and that means they have lost over $20K in a year. I would say based off of the prices I have seen, it is very likely a $6500 Leaf could be worth half that in the next two years. Unless gas prices go back up to near $5/gallon, I think these EV cars are going to continue to suffer from this.

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