• Popular electric cars have appreciated in value during 2019, bucking industry trends, according to new CarGurus research
  • Renault Zoe is the standout EV, with some versions increasing in value by 18% over the past 10 months
  • Increased demand for EVs boosting prices, as shift towards electric power gains momentum
  • CarGurus.co.uk helps buyers find a fair deal in a rapidly changing market, through its Instant Market Value (IMV) listings and deal ratings tool

Every day, CarGurus analyses millions of data points on hundreds of thousands of UK used car listings to calculate each car’s Instant Market Value (IMV) or fair retail price. Using this data, CarGurus examined prices for the four most searched-for EVs on CarGurus.co.uk — the BMW i3, Nissan Leaf, Renault Zoe and Tesla Model S — since the start of 2017. The results showed that prices either rose or remained level for months at a time, and in all cases far outperformed the most searched-for petrol and diesel equivalents listed on CarGurus.co.uk over the same period.

The Renault Zoe electric supermini performed particularly well. CarGurus figures show that between January 2017 and November 2019 the average asking price for a used 2015 model year Renault Zoe increased by 18%, from £6,425 to £7,612. By comparison, the average price for the most popular petrol and diesel supermini of the same age on CarGurus.co.uk, the Ford Fiesta, decreased by 22% over the same period, from £9,165 to £7,160.

Another strong performer was the BMW i3, with prices of 2014 examples on the used market increasing by 1% since the start of the year. By comparison, values of petrol or diesel-engined MINI hatchbacks, the most searched-for premium small car on CarGurus, fell by 14% over the same period.

The Nissan Leaf is the best-selling pure EV in the UK, yet despite a good supply of used car stock its values remain consistently high. Earlier models perform even better than later versions, with the average price for a 2015 Nissan Leaf in November 2019 just 9% lower than in January 2017, at £10,438. By comparison, the average price for 2015 examples of the most searched for petrol or diesel family car on CarGurus, the Volkswagen Golf, dropped by 17% over the same period.

Turning to the higher end of the price scale, the Tesla Model S luxury EV is also performing well on the used car market. Between October 2017 and November 2019, the average price of a 2015 Model S on CarGurus.co.uk decreased by 29%, from £57,746 to £40,957. While that’s a bigger drop than for cheaper EVs such as the Nissan Leaf and Renault Zoe it still significantly outperforms the most searched-for petrol or diesel-powered luxury car on CarGurus.co.uk, the Mercedes-Benz S-Class. Over the same period the average price of a used 2015 model year S-Class listed on CarGurus.co.uk dropped by 37%, from £50,783 to £32,166.

The fact that values of the cheapest EV models CarGurus studied have either remained stable or risen slightly during 2019 suggests that demand for used electric cars is increasing. This is backed up by a significant increase in demand for new electric cars during 2019, with figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) showing that, year to date, sales of new electric cars have increased by 125% compared with 2018.

“Our data shows that the residual values of EVs have turned a corner as an increasing number of buyers are starting to take advantage of the benefits of electric motoring, such as the low running costs and easy driving manners of cars like the Nissan Leaf and Renault Zoe,” said Chris Knapman, CarGurus.co.uk editor.

“With the market changing so quickly it can be hard to judge what’s a fair deal, which is why the price analysis and deal ratings offered by CarGurus are such powerful tools. With this technology to hand, consumers wanting to move into the world of electric motoring can feel confident of paying a fair price.”

Founded by TripAdvisor co-founder Langley Steinert, CarGurus combines dealer reviews with comprehensive car valuation analytics to bring trust and transparency to the automotive marketplace, allowing buyers to quickly and easily find great deals from the best dealers.

For more information & news from CarGuru’s, please click here.