Automotive

All Things Used Cars: Are You Ready For Electric Vehicles?

Show customers you are meeting them where they are and investing in where they are going.
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All Things Used Cars: Are You Ready For Electric Vehicles?

A recent study found Gen Z is frustrated by the car buying experience. Among the top things these first-time buyers want is education - Online and in-person information from knowledgeable and trustworthy sources. 

Last week's All Things Used Cars conversation tackled the topic of dealership EV readiness. Several times the conversation drifted to the importance of staff knowledge. Not only for selling, appraising, and maintaining electric vehicles but in providing the knowledgable and trustworthy relationships customers want. 

Host David Long and guests John Ellis, Scott Case, and Andrew Diffenderfer lead the conversation through facts, misconceptions, and tips for preparing for electric vehicle retail.

Facts.

Customers are interested.
Profits are high, and inventory is moving fast. Electric vehicles are no exception. David shared that his dealership cannot keep used EVs in stock, and they are often back orders by customers before they arrive at the store. 

In Q1 2022 searches for EVs went up 33% in the US. 

Appraising is an entirely different process.
An EV's battery accounts for 30-40% of the vehicle's value. Knowing the difference between a healthy battery, a half-spent battery, and a battery on its way out should be considered in all decisions based on EV buying and selling. 

Misconceptions. 

The EPA cannot perfectly measure battery range. 
EV batteries lose max range over time. The rate at which the capacity is reduced changes depending on driving conditions.

  • Climate. Extreme weather reduces charge faster
  • Season. Running AC or Heat reduces charge faster. 
  • How is the battery charged? Fast charging kills the capacity faster.
  • Has the battery ever been replaced? Sometimes a vehicle with 75K miles has a brand new battery. 
"Take all these numbers as a guide, not exact truth" -Scott Case

EVs need less maintenance. 
Another misconception about electric vehicles is they need less maintenance. Just because there is no oil does not mean these vehicles do not need frequent tire maintenance and other regular check-ins with fixed-ops. 

However, this is not communicated in the manual. Customers will be looking to the dealership for knowledge of the service inerval. 

Tips. 

Battery, battery, battery. 
Learn to identify a healthy battery and communicate that due diligence and quality in transparent pricing. 

Lowest Price < Best Value
As always be a partner to the buyer in their experience. Invest in their success by helping them get the best value and helping them understand why. 

Looking ahead. 
By 2031 51% of the market will be EVs. Being able to provide the best education and experience to customers starts now. Seek used EVs to buy and learn about, add visible chargers to your dealership, and list your charging location on every charging app you can to bring people to the store. 

Show customers you are meeting them where they are and investing in where they are going. 

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