GUIDE. Looking for a used electric car? Here are 10 questions to ask yourself before you buy.

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If you’re thinking about buying a used electric vehicle, what are the right questions to ask? What models are available? At what price? Pitfalls to avoid? Our advice for a worry-free purchase.

Buying a used electric car? The idea may have been in your head for a few months. High gasoline prices, respect for the environment, traffic restrictions in big cities: there are many reasons to use electricity.

Buying an electric car sometimes means taking a leap into the unknown. What criteria should be taken into account? Mistakes not to make? The Midi Dispatch gives you some advice on how to get there.

What will the vehicle be used for?

First reflex to have: define the use of the vehicle. Will it be a second vehicle for commuting to work, taking the kids to school or shopping? Will it be the main vehicle of the family? In the first case, a city car is sufficient. In the second case, you have to buy a sedan or an SUV.

What models are available?

The most common electric vehicle is the Renault Zoé, launched in 2012. In ten years, the model has evolved a lot: autonomy, battery size, charging system. “A Renault Zoé 2012 has nothing to do with a Zoé 2022”, explains Pierre Desjardins, editor-in-chief of the site. self-own. with. A Zoé from the same year might even be different.

The other most common model is the Nissan Leaf. On specialized websites, there are also ads for the Dacia Spring, the Hyundai Ioniq, the Volkswagen e-Golf, the Kia e-Niro or the Tesla Model 3 and Model S, for example.

Are there patterns to avoid?

Two models are not recommended by Nicolas Bernard, editor-in-chief ofAuto More : the Citroën C0 and the Peugeot iOn. “These are the clones of a very narrow little Mitsubishi, they should be avoided for their very small autonomy or their behavior. They really aren’t big.”

Electric car usage is used to choose the model.
Photo DDM, Romain Gruffaz

What are the most autonomous models?

Battery life has evolved a lot in just a few years. The experts we interviewed advise favoring models placed on the market since 2017-2018 to have a range of at least 250 km. Nicholas Bernard ofAuto More recommends not purchasing a model prior to the Renault Zoé ZE-40 put into service at the end of 2016. An electric car used as a second vehicle, with a range of 250 km, is recharged only once a week on average

What are the prices?

You can find a used electric vehicle for around 10,000 euros. For a sedan, you have to put twice as much: more than 20,000 euros.

Are there helpers?

For the purchase of a used electric vehicle, there is a state bonus of 1,000 euros. You must keep the vehicle for at least two years. In addition, for the inhabitants of Occitania, the region offers an eco-mobility check for a maximum of €2,000. At the same time, it is possible to receive a conversion bonus, between €2,500 and €5,000 depending on your income, if you send a pre-2011 diesel model or pre-2006 petrol model for scrap. Corresponds to Crit’ air vignettes 3, 4, 5 and beyond”, explains Pierre Desjardins of the website self-own. with.

Drivers recharge their electric car on the vacation route.

Drivers recharge their electric car on the vacation route.
MaxPPP photo

What are the vehicle charging times?

Some models can only be recharged at a conventional outlet, the latest models can also be recharged at fast charging stations. At home, it may be interesting to install a wall box, a charging station. The vehicle plugged in at night is 100% charged in the morning (compared to 20 hours on a conventional outlet). The price of this charging station, between €1,000 and €1,500, depends on the desired electrical power and options. Installation entitles you to a tax credit. It will likely be necessary to increase the power of your electricity meter and therefore make a more expensive subscription.

Can we own an electric vehicle in a home?

The law provides for a “right to take”. If you want to have an individual socket to recharge your electric vehicle, the landlord cannot object to this. The work will be your responsibility. Installation of a meter will be required for billing.

What should you pay attention to before buying an electric vehicle?

It is absolutely advisable to know the battery health status. Over the years, as with a cell phone, the battery loses autonomy due to too frequent charging, fast charging or temperatures. The battery must be above 80%. “If I had any advice to give, I would buy a used electric car from a garage and not from a private person”, advises Nicolas Bernard ofAuto More. It is then necessary to make a diagnosis called SOH (“state of health”). The company Moba offers this service for €49. It sends you a box that you will need to plug into the vehicle’s OBD socket to perform diagnostics before sending the box back to the company for analysis.

What are the maintenance costs on an electric model?

An electric vehicle does not, by definition, have an oil change to do. On the other hand, as in a thermal vehicle, the brake discs and pads or shock absorbers must be changed. Tires need to be monitored. Being a heavier electric vehicle, it wears out the tires faster.

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