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'16 Volt or '?? Model 3?

igotzzoom

Active Member
May 26, 2013
1,217
610
Mission Viejo, CA
Hi All. I'm debating whether or not to bite the bullet on a '16 Volt (which will be out in about a month) or hold out for the Model 3. Supposedly, a concept is going to be shown in March '16, which I could definitely wait that long for. For that matter, my current car will definitely last until mid-late CY '18, which is realistically when I think the Model 3 will be out, at the earliest. We also have about two years worth of payments left on my wife's Ford Escape. I like the idea of not having two car payments simultaneously. Is anyone else experiencing this angst?
 

Skotty

2014 S P85 | 2020 3 P19"
Jun 27, 2013
2,528
1,963
Kansas City, MO
I myself was just debating whether to upgrade from a 2012 Volt to a 2016 Volt or wait until I can get a Tesla (which could be an S, X, or 3, depending on how things work out).

While the 2016 Volt is greatly improved and worthy of upgrading to, my personal choice at this time is to wait until I can get a Tesla. But if you are waiting on the Model 3, it might be worthwhile to get a 2016 Volt in the interim. Depends on how happy you are with your current car and if you think it will last through 2018. I wouldn't count on getting my hands on a Model 3 probably until 2019 (IMO).
 

ggies07

Supporting Member
Supporting Member
Nov 8, 2012
3,893
7,800
DFW
Model 3, always Model 3. No more gas powered cars, whether they use a little or a lot....It's EVs from now. If you can wait, then wait.
 

igotzzoom

Active Member
May 26, 2013
1,217
610
Mission Viejo, CA
Yeah. I'm still torn. The shortest time I've ever owned a car has been 3 years. I kept my last car 7 years, and if I were to wait for the Model 3, I'd keep my current one 7 or 8 years. I know some people that change cars like underwear, but I'm not one of them. I have no doubts my current car will last until CY '19 (it's only a 2011 model), but then it'll be worth so little, it'll make a minimal difference on my down payment on what's likely to be a nearly $45,000 car. Whereas a 3 year-old Volt will still likely have a pretty decent resale.
 

ggies07

Supporting Member
Supporting Member
Nov 8, 2012
3,893
7,800
DFW
Yeah. I'm still torn. The shortest time I've ever owned a car has been 3 years. I kept my last car 7 years, and if I were to wait for the Model 3, I'd keep my current one 7 or 8 years. I know some people that change cars like underwear, but I'm not one of them. I have no doubts my current car will last until CY '19 (it's only a 2011 model), but then it'll be worth so little, it'll make a minimal difference on my down payment on what's likely to be a nearly $45,000 car. Whereas a 3 year-old Volt will still likely have a pretty decent resale.

I get it, my car will be 10 years old by the time the Model 3 is ready. But if you are buying a Volt to have that extra cushion instead of a Leaf, wait for the real thing. You will still get a long range car and it will be all electric.
 

KJD

OD 7/27 MYLR Red/Black 19's No FSD EDD 10/23-11/12
Supporting Member
Dec 14, 2013
1,386
1,081
SLC, UT
Yeah. I'm still torn. The shortest time I've ever owned a car has been 3 years. I kept my last car 7 years, and if I were to wait for the Model 3, I'd keep my current one 7 or 8 years. I know some people that change cars like underwear, but I'm not one of them. I have no doubts my current car will last until CY '19 (it's only a 2011 model), but then it'll be worth so little, it'll make a minimal difference on my down payment on what's likely to be a nearly $45,000 car. Whereas a 3 year-old Volt will still likely have a pretty decent resale.
Driving your current car will be by far the least expensive option. 1st year depreciation on any car is huge and seems to be worse than most on the Volt. See the 5 year cost to own page below.
Kelley Blue Book
 

MichFin

Member
May 8, 2015
303
67
Detroit, MI
I have a Volt and a model S and both are great cars. The Volt is pretty small though and not nearly as cool as a Tesla. If I were you I would get a used Volt or Leaf (really cheap) and enjoy the future now.
 

igotzzoom

Active Member
May 26, 2013
1,217
610
Mission Viejo, CA
I've thought about the used Leaf route. You're right. They're dirt-cheap right now. The only thing that makes me somewhat hesitant is that I have a 100-mile round-trip commute 1 day a week. The rest of the time, the shorter range is a non-issue. There is a paid CHAdeMO charger near my remote work location, but after hearing all the horror stories on this forum and others about non-functional or malfunctioning public charging stations, it makes me a bit leery. Of course, the one workaround to that would be to borrow my wife's car on those days, and give her the Leaf. The Soul EV is still a possible option, but they seem a little pricey for what they are, and I don't want to commit to a four-year lease or five-year payment plan, and have buyer's remorse when the Model 3 finally comes out. I'd have much less of that with a used Leaf.
 

MassModel3

Member
Aug 19, 2014
907
256
MA South Shore
The '16 volt is a really nice looking car, but I guess it all comes down to how much you like gas stations.

Plus, I know the 3 will have all the technological bells and whistles and will get over-the-air updates for many years to come, but I don't think we can say the same of the Volt (though I really don't know).
 

Drucifer

Active Member
Nov 30, 2014
1,117
263
Charlotte, NC
I would recommend getting a used Volt or holding on to your Volt until you can get the Tesla you want. If you buy a used Volt for about $18k today, in 3 years you will likely be able to sell it for $10-12k and not take too excessive of a beating on it.

my .02
 

Electricfan

Active Member
Aug 24, 2013
1,251
378
Houston
Hi All. I'm debating whether or not to bite the bullet on a '16 Volt (which will be out in about a month) or hold out for the Model 3.

You have another choice too - the Bolt. It will most likely be out before the Model 3 (we need a contest similar to the autopilot release prediction for this if there isn't one). I bet it beats the 3 out by 2 years or more. (based on the X)

My two cents, get the '16 Volt. You'll love it and you'll be driving electric much earlier.
 

igotzzoom

Active Member
May 26, 2013
1,217
610
Mission Viejo, CA
You have another choice too - the Bolt. It will most likely be out before the Model 3 (we need a contest similar to the autopilot release prediction for this if there isn't one). I bet it beats the 3 out by 2 years or more. (based on the X)

My two cents, get the '16 Volt. You'll love it and you'll be driving electric much earlier.

Also, referring back to ggies07, going from my Sonata to a Volt would dramatically REDUCE my current fuel consumption, even if it doesn't get me 100% off gasoline. Considering the Bolt, which is potentially an option, but something tells me the Model 3 will be infinitely sexier and higher-performance than the Bolt, which from what I've seen basically looks like an electrified Buick Encore.

Honestly, I think the most likely scenario at this point is to wait 'til March '16 when the Model 3 concept will (supposedly) be shown. At that time, I can make some determination on the "want" factor, and hopefully, there will be slightly more clarity on availability. If it looks like it's still going to be 3 years out at that point, I may take the plunge on a Volt.
 

postpast

Member
Feb 12, 2015
144
132
Toronto
2016 Volt has some pretty impressive tech and the Volt in general has had great resale. Buy a 16 Volt now and if in 2018 the Model 3 is available you can buy one and not lose much. If the Model 3 isn't available until 2019 or later it won't be a big hardship and you can support Tesla on their schedule.

EM has said his mission is to increase EV ownership, buying a new Volt will only help that. I doubt anyone believes the Model 3 will be available to buy in the next three years. If you act now, you could support EV's for now and Tesla then. [FONT=Linux Libertine, Georgia, Times, serif]
[/FONT]
 

Bangor Bob

Member
Jan 5, 2015
670
487
Bangor, ME
Volt resale actually sucks, close to 60% depreciation on loaded super-clean 3-year old examples even at dealer CPO prices. Private sale probably slightly worse. Used ones are a good deal though, I have one in my driveway. ;)

If you KNOW you're going to get a Model 3, then a 3-year lease of a Volt may be appropriate, it all depends on what the lease terms are and if you can live within the mileage (I can't). For the 1st-gen Volt, the residual was roughly $6k more than resale value and the leaseholder wasn't budging on it, so it made a lot of sense to just turn them in at the end of the lease. If you can park the Exploder and have your wife drive your car, then there's that as well...

In my case my wife parked her car and doubled her mileage by starting to drive my old Prius, but it already has 240,000 miles, so who knows if it'll make it until the Model 3 is available.

By the time a lease on a '16 is up we're going to have much better EV choices on the "more economic" end of the scale than today, as well...
 

GSP

Member
Supporting Member
Dec 28, 2007
2,577
832
I also recommend investigating used Volts, and driving one until you can get a Model III. It may cost a little more than keeping your current car, but it will be a lot more satisfying to be driving electric in the meantime.

I bought a new Volt in Feb 2011 (ordered it in July 2010). That was nowhere near as cost effective as buying a used one today, but I have enjoyed it so much that could not imagine driving an ICE car for all that time until the III is available.

GSP
 

doubeld

Member
Aug 11, 2015
324
171
Calgary, AB
I know production will be a little limited but I would bet that as soon as the Model 3 is released, a LOT of [B|V]olts will flood the market from people ditching for the Model 3. I test drove the 2015 Volt, and it was great, but the 2016 will be better. The rear legroom was a deal-breaker for me, so we'll see how the 2016 is.

I'm kind of in the same boat though. I've got a 2008 Lancer that just refuses to break down, so I'm presumably driving that until the Model 3 comes out, even though I love the thought of running on the Voltec.
 

djplong

Member
Apr 3, 2013
505
383
NH
Don't buy another depreciating asset until it's the one you really want.

Go ahead and total up all the expenses you'll encounter from now until mid 2018 if you were to buy a Volt or something else. Then compare them to the expenses of driving your current rides. Don't forget to factor in the depreciation on whatever 'new' thing you might get.

I was waiting for the Volt to come out because I thought that would be the perfect car for me. Then I heard about Tesla. I knew the Roadster and Model S were too expensive for me - but I heard about Project Bluestar, Phase Three, the Model E and now it's called the Model 3. I've been praying to get more time out of my 2002 Camry so that it'll last until I can take possession of the Tesla out there in the ether that has my name on it. I'm putting aside $200/mo (a little less than my old car payment was) to save up for the down payment.

Wait for what you REALLY want. You'll be more satisfied in the end. In my case, not having a Volt means all those ICE parts that won't need service.
 

AB4EJ

Member
Feb 25, 2015
775
394
Tuscaloosa, AL
Other considerations for the Model 3 - Tesla has run behind schedule with all new models so far, therefore I would wait until it actually comes out to make a purchase decision - which could be 3 years, 5 years, who knows. Also - as a car guy for decades, I can tell you - unless being "first on the block" with a new thing is your first priority, you should normally not buy a new model during its first year of production. It is amazing how many problems come out of the woodwork during the first year, and are fixed by engineering changes. The manufacturer will fix the problems under warranty, sure, but this can be a pain. That said, there will be plenty of early adopters who don't mind this at all - let them do the beta testing.
 

MassModel3

Member
Aug 19, 2014
907
256
MA South Shore
- which could be 3 years, 5 years, who knows.
Bah, humbug!

There is no way Tesla is going to be 3 to 5 years late on the Model 3. This is the one they're betting everything on. This is their game changer. This one has to be on time and on budget -- or at least close. The S and X were late because the Tesla team was learning the process and just can't stop trying to squeeze one more gadgets into the final product. Elon has said that this will not be the case with the 3. I believe it.

unless being "first on the block" with a new thing is your first priority, you should normally not buy a new model during its first year of production

The problem here is with the eventual end of the federal tax credit. Early adopters risk being hit with unexpected issues, but they get the $7.5K. Wait and you're less likely to see any of that federal credit, but you have a more reliable vehicle. Pick your poison...
 

ggies07

Supporting Member
Supporting Member
Nov 8, 2012
3,893
7,800
DFW
Bah, humbug!

There is no way Tesla is going to be 3 to 5 years late on the Model 3. This is the one they're betting everything on. This is their game changer. This one has to be on time and on budget -- or at least close. The S and X were late because the Tesla team was learning the process and just can't stop trying to squeeze one more gadgets into the final product. Elon has said that this will not be the case with the 3. I believe it.

I agree. It's late already for 2017, but won't be "several more years" and it's because of the gigafactory. They have to have that on time, which makes the Model 3 packs and prices on time.
 

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