That’s because the calendar age of your car can tell you a lot about the battery that fuels it—even more than the model year. If you’re considering purchasing a used electric vehicle, don’t let the calendar age slip through the cracks.
Why calendar age matters with electric cars
First, it’s important to understand what calendar age means when it comes to cars. Calendar age refers to both the year and month in which a car was produced, like February 2021. Model year refers to just the year in which a car was produced, like 2020.
You can typically find out most of what you need to know about a gas powered vehicle from just the model year. But for electric cars, calendar age is important because of the battery life. According to
InsideEVs, batteries age differently than combustion engines, and they’re harder to evaluate.
Because the lithium-ion batteries in electric cars degrade with time and changing cycles, InsideEVs argues a driver can paint a clearer picture of battery health when taking into account calendar age over model year.
For example, say two cars were produced in 2021, but one was produced in February 2021 and the other November 2021. When it comes to battery life, the car produced in November 2021 might have a significantly better battery than the car produced in February 2021, but if you just took into account model year, you’d never know that. When it comes to batteries, months matter.
Other factors to consider when going electric
Whether you buy a new or used electric car, drivers need to consider their driving and lifestyle habits to ensure electric is right for them. For example, electric vehicles need to be charged, which takes longer than fueling up at a gas pump. Do you have the time to charge your electric vehicle regularly? Are there charging stations near your home? Will you install one?
Plus, drivers should consider their long-term goals with their vehicle. If you want to reduce your carbon footprint, an electric vehicle might be a great choice. If you want to spend more upfront and less in the long run, an electric vehicle makes sense. But, if you’d rather pay more in maintenance overtime, an alternative option might be better for your needs.
If you weigh all these options and decide an electric vehicle is for you, the next choice is if you’re going to purchase a new or used vehicle.
Pros of buying a used electric car
Although calendar age will be higher on a used electric car, which might indicate a declining battery, there are still great perks that come with buying a used electric car. According to
Edmunds, these are some of the highlights:
- Better deals and bigger savings.
- Smoother drive.
- Environmental benefits don’t change between a new and used electric car.
- Possible carpool access, rebates, or tax credits.
Cons of buying a used electric car
While there are perks to buying a used electric car, there are cons as well that can’t be ignored. The most glaring of which we’ve already discussed—the possibility of the battery degrading overtime and causing problems in the future. Here are a few more cons of buying a used electric car that Edmunds highlighted:
- Finding or installing a charging port for regular use.
- Outdated technology.
- More potential maintenance costs.