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Experience on trading an ICE for Tesla

Discussion in 'Model S: Ordering, Production, Delivery' started by Caretaker, Jan 10, 2015.

  1. Caretaker

    Caretaker Member

    Sep 28, 2014
    What rates are you getting on trading and paying off your ICE when compared to KBB price?

    After speaking to some Tesla owners, I heard the trade-in experience is not what it is made out to be, people are getting very low offers on their ICE vehicles and turning to Carmax and other options to sell their existing vehicle to buy a Tesla.

    Tesla claims to stay out of the bidding process but the offers seem ridiculous by some accounts, we're taking 10's of thousands of dollars less than KBB.
  2. R²B

    R²B All Star

    Aug 24, 2014
    Waddell, AZ
    Tesla matched my Carmax offer, which was much higher than Tesla's original offer. So it took some back and forth but worked out in the end.
  3. Footbag

    Footbag Member

    Jun 29, 2013
    Edmonton, Canada
    #3 Footbag, Jan 10, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2015
    Tesla offered $6000 less than I was able to get walking into a dealer and saying "take my car from me" (which itself wasnt bringing in a great price but was easy and fast). Quite disappointed in the Tesla process. I wrote back to both the appraisal person as well as my DS about the low ball offer, but never got a response from either. For better or worse I justified the 'trade in' value I got as part of the Tesla tax.
  4. bonaire

    bonaire Active Member

    Aug 24, 2013
    #4 bonaire, Jan 10, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2015
  5. Ohm's Law

    Ohm's Law Member

    Dec 25, 2014
    I am currently on the fence after being offered $12,000 less than the blue book price; this is before they looked at my car so I am not sure if it'll get better after they see it; with this offer I'd rather keep my premium ICE SUV even though I would rarely use it after getting my S85D :biggrin:

    I too was told that Tesla makes no profit from the sale but it seems like someone is trying to make a killing by selling some nice pre-owned cars with a huge markup.

    thanks for the tips on Car-Sense and competitive pricing from Tesla from CarMax, I will be checking those out too.

  6. lsnetman

    lsnetman Member

    Jul 20, 2014
    Miami, FL
    I traded a 2014 G550, and at the suggestion of the Tesla DS, checked the KBB pricing. Tesla offered about $6000 less! CarMax was no help, as they don't really have the clientele for a 100k SUV, so their best offer was 2k less than Tesla's. After deciding to cancel my order Tesla stepped up and raised the trade by $5000. That sealed the deal.
  7. NOLA_Mike

    NOLA_Mike Active Member

    May 11, 2013
    Hammond, LA
    So, what is the ICE trade in process for Tesla now? When I did mine back in May of 2013 Tesla just directed you to AutoNation Direct and that was the end of it. If you took AutoNation's offer then the check for your trade was sent straight to Tesla and reflected on the paperwork as a credit for a trade in.

    I'm getting the drift that things are handled differently now? Is Tesla handling ICE trades directly now?

  8. mspohr

    mspohr Active Member

    Jul 27, 2014
    Tesla does not have a used car lot like ICE dealers where they resell their trades. They have to wholesale any trade-in so they can't offer much more than the wholesale price so I wouldn't expect to get a good trade-in from them. You'd be much better off selling private party.
    Also, premium SUV ICE cars have horribly high depreciation so you'll have to expect to take a bath on them regardless of where you sell.
  9. dandelot

    dandelot Member

    Jul 21, 2014
    San Francisco
    The Carmax (or whatever it was) offer for our Jaguar S-Type was absurdly low.
    Sold Jaguar through our Jag mechanic (his customer) for a decent price,
    (4x Carmax offer). As mspohr says, Tesla is not in the used car business.
  10. mastaace

    mastaace Member

    Dec 5, 2014
    Madison WI
    Traded my 2008 Audi RS4 to Tesla. They matched the CarMax offer which was about $5000 less than KBB value. I just went ahead with it due to convenience. If you have the time, sell it to a private party.
  11. arijaycomet

    arijaycomet Member

    Dec 18, 2014
    Cleveland, Ohio
    Same situation here for me. Two year old Audi Allroad wagon with just under 30k miles on it. Was able to get $5k more from a local friend who runs a car lot versus what Tesla offered me. Still passed papers through Tesla so that I could get tax benefit by trading in. But definitely shop around. Tesla ONLY sends the car off to a wholesale location, hence they are going to be lower on trade-in than most dealers. And yeah, I've sold cars to CarMax before with good luck there, too! G'luck!

    PS: Where are you in PA? Are you dealing with the Cleveland/Lyndhurst store? If so, and you need assistance LMK, I'm friends with the sales team there but also have a trade-in source here in Cleveland that I did my Audi from. :)
  12. dkonigs

    dkonigs Member

    Apr 11, 2015
    San Jose, CA
    I just got my trade-in quote from Tesla for my ICE (a 2005 Toyota) today. It was definitely lower than I was expecting, based on KBB searches from Tesla). Since they haven't evaluated the car's condition yet, I wonder how much its likely to change afterwards. KBB showed around $5-6k, taking condition into account. Tesla offered $4.5k pre-inspection.

    However, considering the amount of money we're talking about, versus what I'm about to actually spend on the Model S, I don't really think its even worth having an argument over. The convenience of doing trade-in as part of my new car delivery may be enough to make me just take the low-ball offer.

    Now, if I was trading in a car that was actually still worth something substantial, I might go to the extra effort.
  13. Terra117

    Terra117 Member

    Feb 3, 2015
    Edina, MN
    #13 Terra117, Apr 14, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2015
    I don't believe there is a killing being made anywhere. Tesla doesn't sell used cars, so they are selling them to wholesellers. likely at auction. They need something for their time, vehicle storage and transport, transfer fees and so on, and are likely getting sub-wholesale prices when they sell.

    It wouldn't surprise me if they are deliberately low-balling trade-in offers to avoid the hassle of dealing with the vehicles, assuming ICE owners would go elsewhere to sell.

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