Few cars were as hotly anticipated as the Tesla Model 3, Tesla’s "cheap" electric vehicle (EV), which introduced the brand to a new range of shoppers that couldn’t — or didn’t want to — pony up for a Tesla Model S or Model X. The Model 3 first came out back in November 2017, meaning sales have been progressing for a year and half now — so it’s time to take a look at the market.
It’s especially time to take a look at the market as company founder Elon Musk has suggested many Tesla models will go up in value as they age — something very few cars do. The theory here is that as Tesla models age, their self-driving capabilities will be enhanced thanks to over-the-air updates, which will make them more valuable.
This may be true in the future, but it’s certainly not true right now. As demand has caught up with supply, owners of Tesla Model 3 vehicles can no longer ask a premium for them on the used market — especially as miles have been added. Right now, the cheapest high-mileage Model 3 — with around 20,000 miles — is listed for $43,900, which is likely around $10,000 cheaper than the original price. The cheapest Model 3 models are all in the mid-$40,000 range, in fact, which is certainly cheaper than they cost to buy new a year ago.
With that said, the Model 3 is indeed holding its value quite well — just not increasing exponentially. The average asking price for a used 2018 Model 3 is $49,250 — and while that’s far higher than the current base price of around $35,000, nearly all early models had high option content and sticker prices in the mid-$50,000 range. In fact, the $35,000 version only just went on sale.
As a result, it’s clear that Model 3 models are dropping in value, but not substantially — but dropping nonetheless. After all, a shopper faced with buying a used one or a new one at the same price will surely choose the new one, unless there’s a big wait — and, right now, there isn’t, after production has ramped up. With that in mind, it’s unlikely that the Model 3 will meet Elon Musk’s target of radical appreciation over the next few years — but I suppose anything is possible. Find a Tesla Model 3 for sale