Market Watch: Affordable Used Electric Cars We Would Buy Today In Singapore

Market Watch: Affordable Used Electric Cars We Would Buy Today In Singapore

Gerald Yuen
Gerald Yuen
30 Mar 2023

The prospect of diving in “blind” is hard to fathom especially when it comes to car purchases, even more so when we are exploring used cars powered solely on batteries. Apart from the battery pack, does the current warranty cover suspension and steering components? Will its range suffer after a couple of years? Did the previous owner’s charging habits harm the car? What if the warranty eventually expires - will 3rd party workshops be able to handle BEV-related servicing?

These are genuine queries that will be amplified the closer you are to a used battery electric vehicle (BEV) purchase. Until there are more BEVs on the road, timelines will then be able to reveal reliability-related concerns. And rightly so, because cars in Singapore are so pricey that it requires proper research before depreciation hits you hard.

On the flipside, used BEVs benefit from the same economics as more traditional counterparts - they are able to dodge first buyer depreciation, which is often a fair bit chunkier than pre-loved specimens. That’s where Carousell Certified Cars come in handy: you can secure your next car with confidence and also source for car insurance quotes from OneShift here.

While we strongly believe that BEV and ICE-powered vehicles have to co-exist, another way to pursue sustainability is to prolong a BEV’s lifespan, enjoy carbon-free emissions for as long as possible in our bid to “offset” the amount of carbon emitted leading up to its production. While the latter is a reality we often sweep under the rug, buying a used electric car loosely falls into the concept of reuse, reduce and recycle.

BYD e6 Electric

Depreciation: S$13,574 per year

It might seem that bang for buck new car deals from Chinese manufacturers are only diverted towards the BYD Atto 3, while we wait in anticipation for Cycle & Carriage to offer ORA’s Good Cat in the second half of the year. Sure, the chase for paper figures are often key to attract prospective buyers - no one does it more impressively than Chinese EV automakers. But this means older products like the BYD e6 can fly under the radar, paving the way to negotiate better used car deals while others pursue the newest and greatest. According to the listing, BYD Singapore offers free servicing for 120,000km or 6 years, over and above an 8-year warranty or 500,000km mileage, whichever comes first. This, or a higher mileage Honda Vezel at similar depreciation?

MG 5 Electric

Depreciation: S$15,500 per year

While the idea of piloting a fast wagon is cool and all-embracing, it might not be entirely kind to your pockets even if you’ve convinced the family that it’s the perfect one car garage solution. The MG 5 wagon’s aesthetics might remind us why this form factor hasn’t aged particularly well with its humdrum looks, but beneath its skin lies a hugely practical cabin. Think of it as a battery operated Swiss army knife - fuss free, effective and accomplished. A claimed range of 403km doesn't sound anxiety-inducing, and a century sprint of 8.8 seconds / 280Nm can give you confidence for quick errands around the city. Packaged in a depreciation that’s on par with a 1.4-litre TSI-powered Golf.

Honda E

Depreciation: S$15,800 per year

Placing a car with a monthly depreciation of S$1,300 in the affordable category might sound absurd, but the reasoning starts to align when we realise that’s only a sliver more than what the Honda Jazz is commanding. Such is the reality of car ownership in Singapore that nudges us to prioritise what you want in a car. If it’s an EV, do you favour interior space and a decent range? The pint-sized Honda E with a 35.5kWh battery will not satisfy either criteria, but it can put a smile on your face by delivering style in spades. A keen driver will acknowledge that a wheelbase shorter than a Mitsubishi Attrage, more than 300Nm powering the rear axles in a relatively lightweight frame (for an EV) at 1.5 tonnes are ingredients for fun at sensible speeds. Not bad for one that’s 20% lower in depreciation than a MINI Electric, eh?

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