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Looking for used electric vehicles? Planning to purchase a 'second-hand' electric two-wheeler or four-wheeler? Well, we have compiled a list of things you need to know before you make that tempting pre-owned electric vehicle purchase.
The EV market in India is growing like never before. Yes, it still has a long way to go before it can even try to catch up with the sheer sales numbers of its internal combustion engine-powered counterparts. However, the sales of EVs are higher than they ever were before.
Also, it has to be noted that the growth of EV sales have been constant. The interest towards EVs too has increased and more buyers are considering the switch to EVs. However, there is a small problem - prices of EVs are too high and this sometimes holds a few buyers back.
The Ather 450X is one of the best electric scooters currently on sale in the Indian market. It is priced at around Rs 1.40 lakh. However, its closest petrol-powered counterpart, the TVS Ntorq 125 is priced at around Rs 88,000. This is a huge price gap.
The story is the same when it comes to electric cars too. The top-spec, fully loaded Tata Nexon Diesel AMT variant is priced at Rs 12.95 lakh. On the other hand, the base variant of the Tata Nexon EV is priced at Rs 13.99 lakh while the top-spec variant is priced at Rs 16.56 lakh.
The price gap between an electric vehicle and its petrol-powered counterparts is pretty significant. However, electric vehicles obviously have many advantages and those aware of these advantages will quite obviously look at buying an electric vehicle anyday.
It was obvious that EVs would slowly make it to the used vehicle market and it looks like this is happening already. If you are one among those looking at buying a used electric vehicle, watch out for these things:
Condition Of The Electric Motor
Anyone can look at a vehicle and figure out the visual condition of the vehicle. However, the powertrain is more complicated than just taking a look at it. Electric Vehicle powertrains barely have any moving parts, making them relatively simple when compared to internal combustion engines. It is difficult to damage the motor by just driving around.
It is unlikely that the drive motor would be damaged unless there is a physical impact on it. However, it is very difficult to ascertain the condition of the battery pack and circuitry.
Battery Pack's Power Retainability
This is where electric cars and two-wheelers get tricky. Internal damage to the battery pack can occur either due to overcharging or excessive voltage fluctuations. Improper charging habits can also damage the batteries over time and this can be tricky to figure out.
In the case of an internal combustion engine, a short drive/ride while listening to the engine noise can give out problems. This isn't the case with electric vehicles. If it has to be checked thoroughly, one will have to drain it completely, then charge it from zero to full.
The charging time should be as the manufacturer specified. If it takes longer, the battery might have lost its ability to draw power quickly. Also, the test drive/ride will have to be super-long to check if the vehicle is still able to do the range as the manufacturer had claimed. If there are battery issues, it can be resolved quickly too as the battery pack can be replaced.
Electric Vehicles' Quick Depreciation
It is a known fact that premium cars and two-wheelers all depreciate rather quickly. Most of the electric vehicles in India are considered premium and their value depreciated rather quickly. The very reason one looks for an EV in the used vehicle market is this depreciation characteristic.
Prices fall massively the moment one rides out of the dealership. Even if you purchase a used electric vehicle, prices will continue to fall.
Electric Vehicles' Maintenance
Electric Vehicles are relatively simple to maintain when compared to its petrol/diesel-powered counterparts. The powertrain has an immensely low number of moving parts. Maintenance costs are almost non-existent.
However, battery replacement will cost a lot and this is something that will occur with an electric vehicle at some point in time. Users of electric vehicles have to be cautious about power surges while charging the EV. If this is taken care of, an EV is pretty smooth sailing in terms of maintenance.
Charging infrastructure is a basic necessity to own an electric vehicle. Most electric scooters come with their own charging cables. Some premium offerings like the Ather 450 can work with fast-chargers and these chargers are sold by the manufacturer. Having these chargers installed at home is a good idea if you are looking at purchasing a pre-owned electric vehicle.
Electric Vehicles' Cost Of Ownership
An electric vehicle is very cheap to own and use. Annual maintenance costs are minimal and the only running cost is electricity. Increasing prices of fuel will no longer be a problem as an EV only needs to be charged to keep it going.
Electric Vehicles' Technology
The technology used in EVs has come a long way since they were first launched. Firmware updates can be installed at a later stage, but hardware updates are something that cannot be installed easily. A more recent EV will have improved tech when compared to an older one.
Thoughts On Things To Know While Purchasing A Used Electric Vehicle
EVs are becoming increasingly popular in the Indian market and there are more EVs being bought with every passing month. At the same time, more EVs are turning up in the used vehicle market as well. If one purchases an EV with these things in mind, it would make for a brilliant purchase.