Average depreciation of electric cars in the Brazilian market was 20% in one year, above the depreciation of hybrids and combustion models, according to KBB Brasil.

Fully electric cars depreciate   more than hybrids and combustion engines. In the first year, 100% electric cars lose an average of 20% of their value, while for hybrids the depreciation is 18% and for combustion cars, 15%. The data, relating to the Brazilian market, comes from the company specializing in vehicle pricing, KBB Brasil.

The explanation for the greater devaluation of fully electric cars lies in the consumer’s own perception and insecurity with these models, according to the head of Pricing at KBB, Fernando Barros.

“The electric car is still seen as a novelty in Brazil, which generates fears. Those who buy an electric car tend to have high purchasing power and prioritize the acquisition of a brand new model. So, they will always buy new cars”, he says the executive.

He explains that this behavior affects the prices of new cars, as new products arrive on the market more and more frequently and drivers want to update their garages. The gap between electric models, as a result, ends up being faster — which has an impact on the used car market.

New Car

“When the electric car becomes pre-owned, it is unlikely to be absorbed by the public that prioritizes the new car. This puts pressure on the market to reduce its price to fit into a lower budget range. Which, combined with uncertainty about the technology and the product , ends up generating depreciation compared to hybrids and combustion vehicles”, says Barros.

Other external factors that put downward pressure on values ​​are doubts regarding the performance and disposal of batteries and recharging points.

Barros exemplifies three models in the hatchback (or “hatch”) category with a price range between R$200,000 and R$300,000 for a brand new car.

The electric Nissan Leaf Tekna, for example, depreciated by around 30% from January to December 2023, going from an average advertisement of R$296,000 to R$205,000 throughout the year. In this case, Barros points out, Nissan’s announcement to remove the car from the line and discounts also weighed in.

Meanwhile, the Mini Cooper Countryman Exclusive All4 1.5, which is a hybrid, depreciated by approximately 12%, with its value falling from R$251,000 to R$220,000 in the period.

The value and standard of entry-level electric and hybrid models are much higher than combustion models. Therefore, Barros used a gasoline BMW 118i Sport GP model to make the comparison. The German brand’s car appreciated by 1.4% in the period. In January, it cost around R$292 thousand and at the end of the year, R$296 thousand.

In this specific case, as the wait for a new model was long, consumers preferred to buy a pre-owned one straight away, which pushed the average price up.

The Reasons for Choice.

According to Barros, drivers are now more receptive to hybrids because of the mechanics, with which consumers are more familiar. The choice is motivated by the security of having access to resources that you already know from a car running on alcohol or gasoline, and also by the economy – and not necessarily by the hybrid technology.

“The consumer still doesn’t have the perception of testing the technology that electric offers. He is more interested in the savings that the hybrid brings, because he can use less fossil fuel and have the comfort and safety of having the most well-known mechanics. And knowing that you will be able to refuel, not worrying about finding refueling points”, says the KBB Brasil executive.