Buying an Affordable Electric Vehicle

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Megan Foukes is a recent graduate from Indiana University who graduated with a bachelor’s in journalism. Megan works as a content writer for Auto Credit Express and contributes to several automotive and finance blogs.


, - May 24, 2018

One of the best ways to purchase an affordable electric vehicle (EV) is to buy used. Even though the vehicles are affordable on their own, there are hidden costs associated with EVs a buyer needs to keep in mind.

Two Affordable Electric Vehicles

While Tesla may be the hot topic for EVs, they’re extremely unaffordable for the average car buyer. Because EVs are still foreign to many car buyers, they may be unsure if one is right for them. When looking into their first EV, a buyer should consider these two used vehicles if they want something affordable:

Nissan LEAF

  • Average price (2011 to 2015 models): $10,367.20
  • Average mileage (2011 to 2015 models): 44,688.50
  • Average time to charge: Around four to five hours to fully charge from zero with a Level 2 charger.

Ford Focus Electric

  • Average price (2012 to 2016 models): $12,080.40
  • Average mileage (2012 to 2016 models): 25,460.60
  • Average time to charge: With a standard three-pin plug, it’ll fully charge from zero in roughly five to six hours.

Charging an Electric Vehicle

Even though the price point and mileage may seem attractive, a potential buyer needs to know how long it’ll take to charge the EV and what they’ll need in order to do so at home. Certain EVs are known to take a half day or more to fully charge from zero, depending on the type of battery it has and the level of charger you have.

There are three levels of charging a driver can use: Level 1, Level 2, and Level 3.

In order to charge the EV at home, the driver will need either a Level 1 or Level 2 charger. Level 1 chargers typically provide about 15 miles per hour of charge, while Level 2 chargers usually provide about 30 miles per hour of charge. Level 3 chargers are rapid chargers only found in public spaces that normally charge compatible EVs about 80 miles per hour of charge. Level 3 charging is commonly called DC fast charging.

Level 1 chargers can be plugged into wall outlets. Level 2 chargers can be found at public charging stations, but can also be installed outside of your home or in your garage. Installing a charging port can cost anywhere for a few hundred to a few thousand dollars, so plan accordingly. Level 3 chargers can’t be installed at home, but can be utilized at public charging stations.

EVs are the Future

You don’t need to spend a ridiculous amount of money to go green with your next vehicle. But it’s important to know what you’re getting yourself into when you go electric, so make sure you weigh all your options before committing to a used EV.

Whether or not you're looking to finance a used EV, CarsDirect wants to help you find financing if you’re dealing with imperfect credit. We work with a nationwide network of car dealerships that specialize in helping consumers dealing with credit issues. To get started, fill out our secure auto loan request form today.

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Megan Foukes is a recent graduate from Indiana University who graduated with a bachelor’s in journalism. Megan works as a content writer for Auto Credit Express and contributes to several automotive and finance blogs.


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