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Published on April 25th, 2020 | by Zachary Shahan


33× More 2019 Audi A3 & A4 Than Tesla Model 3 On Used Car Market Per Car Sold

April 25th, 2020 by  

We’ve covered the superiority of the Tesla Model 3 compared to other cars in its class in a number of different ways. Add to the list the fact that Tesla Model 3 buyers are holding onto their cars much more than people who buy competing cars in the midsize premium car market, and when cars do hit the used market, they apparently don’t stay there for long.

Before jumping into CleanTechnica’s new findings and some of the implications, let’s quickly remind ourselves of some of the neighboring pieces in this puzzle.

With all of that in mind, it’s not too surprising to find out that, per car sold, there are 33× more 2019 Audi A3 & A4 on the US used car market than 2019 Tesla Model 3. On Earth Day, April 22, 2020, there were 128 used 2019 Tesla Model 3 listed for sale on Autotrader, compared to ~155,000 Model 3 sold in the US in 2019. At the same time, there were 1,001 used 2019 Audi A3 and A4 listed for sale, compared to 36,853 A3 and A4 sold in the US in 2019.

Running the analysis for the 2019 Tesla Model 3 vs. the 2019 BMW 2 Series, 3 Series, and 4 Series, those BMW models were on the used car market 15.5× more per 2019 sale than the 2019 Tesla Model 3.

Out of curiosity, I also ran the analyses for a more conventional, lower-priced model, the Nissan Maxima, and for the most iconic American muscle car, the Ford Mustang. The Model 3 bested the Maxima by ~31× and bested the Mustang by ~17× or more (possibly much more). In the case of the Mustang, it’s actually not clear how many used 2019 Mustangs are on Autotrader because the site shows a maximum of “1000+” and the Mustang reached that max. The ratio could be slightly worse for the Mustang than shown below, or it could be dramatically worse.

The one unfortunate thing here for Tesla fans is that it’s fairly difficult and costly to get a used Model 3. I know many people are waiting for used Model 3 prices to drop quite a bit more to join the electric and/or Tesla fold. Perhaps that will happen as more people receive a Tesla Model Y. Many Model Y buyers may be selling their Model 3 in order to get the Model Y. On the other hand, with Tesla just beginning to roll out automatic stopping at red lights and stop signs, something no other passenger car offers, high demand for the Model 3 — used and new — might accelerate rather than subside.

Thanks to Mike Barnard for doing the initial legwork setting up the framework for this analysis.

Want to buy a Tesla Model 3? Feel free to use my referral code to get some free Supercharging miles with your purchase: https://ts.la/zachary63404.

You can also use the code when buying a Model S or Model X, or can get a $250 discount on Tesla solar with that code. There is currently no use for a referral code when putting down a reservation for a Cybertruck or Model Y 
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About the Author

is tryin' to help society help itself one word at a time. He spends most of his time here on CleanTechnica as its director, chief editor, and CEO. Zach is recognized globally as an electric vehicle, solar energy, and energy storage expert. He has presented about cleantech at conferences in India, the UAE, Ukraine, Poland, Germany, the Netherlands, the USA, Canada, and Curaçao. Zach has long-term investments in Tesla [TSLA] — after years of covering solar and EVs, he simply has a lot of faith in this company and feels like it is a good cleantech company to invest in. But he does not offer (explicitly or implicitly) investment advice of any sort on Tesla or any other company.

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