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Help me understand the UK Tesla market

Hello everyone,

I'm new in this forum, I'm a former Tesla 3 owner from Switzerland relocating with my family (wife and 2 kids 7 and 1 year) in UK for approximately 3 years.

I had to sell my 2020 TM3 because the stirring was in the wrong side 😉. I was very pleased with my car (for me the only drawbacks were road noises and trunk).

Obviously I want to buy a Tesla but I find the TM3 pretty expensive in 2nd hand (compared to the Swiss market). So I'm hesitating between the TM3, TMY and TMS...

My main goal is getting a nice car that I would appreciate driving that would keep a good value when I sell it in 3 years.

I love the model S (the shape, the feeling) and could very much see myself in this big boat (S75D, S90D or even 100D from 2017 to 2018) but I've noticed that some Sussex roads are a little narrow and I'm afraid that my wife would have difficulties with the size and manoeuvrability.

I really appreciated the model 3 and drive it more that 50'000 km but I believe the price is very high in UK 2nd hand market, I'm afraid it will loose a great value in 3 years (and the space available could have been better).

I've never tried the Y but I believe it's a great car very similar to the 3 but bigger. The problem is that there is no 2nd hand market and new car is available from July to September...

Could you explain to me the UK Tesla market and share with me what is your opinion on the matter?

I have another demand, I don't understand the UK car insurance sector. Where should I ask for an offer. I've heard you need to ask in advance in order not being rob because your in a hurry... What covers do you have and what is the range of price?

If you think you can inform me of anything I should know feel free to to so I will be very grateful.

Thanks for u help

ps : please forgive me for my English
 
Welcome!

in regards to the insurance I would use comparison websites such as go compare, money supermarket etc. you just need to fill in the details then it should show you a list of quotes. Have a good shop around.

I'm a soon to be Tesla owner (Model Y) so not best placed to answer your other question but my thoughts as follows; (all opinion)

the model Y is basically the model 3 but a lot more practical space wise etc. there is no 2nd hand market for model Y in the UK as only launched earlier this year (other than people who are trying to Make a profit by selling their nearly new ones at more than retail!)

depending on preference I feel the model Y is the best value for money but depending on budget maybe the model 3 would work better for you. There is a good second hand market for model 3's in the UK.

Really its all dependent on budget and preference.

hope that helps!
 
Also sorry just to add due to supply demands/issues (war in Ukraine etc) the used car market is currently booming and that's why multiple manufacturers are quoting crazy lead times for delivery but that won't always be the case. Second hand car prices will return to normal once suppliers catch up to the demand and then that might become a more viable option for you.
 

NewbieT

Active Member
Aug 16, 2019
1,478
1,063
North West
Used Cars
Second hand car prices are indeed very high. To get a feel for prices have a look at Cinch. Parker’s may be useful too. You’re very unlikely to find many MYs 2nd hand as they have only just started shipping here.

New Car
If I was in your situation I certainly wouldn’t import a left hand drive. I would order a new car now. A very small deposit gets your place in the queue and you can always change your mind. I assume you just go to the UK Tesla site to buy RHD. The M3 is the most plentiful if you must have 2nd hand. 2019 M3’s are starting to come off lease now and people are handing back M3s for the MY. UK consumer law gives you much better protection if you buy with a credit card as opposed to a debit card.

Many people here lease their car with Personal Contract Hire (PCH) or finance with Personal Contract Purchase (PCP). A useful guide to the options is here:
A couple of the lease vendors, people here use:

If you decide to lease don’t buy on the Tesla website, just go straight to the lease company.

Short Term
If you arrive in the UK before your new car, get a short term lease. Google “short car lease UK”. Options for 1,3,6,12 months.

Insurance
 
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JonB

Member
Oct 31, 2021
325
200
UK
About M3 / MY and Sussex roads. The M3 feels quite wide at the front and sometimes this makes me feel a little uncomfortable in the twisty A roads of Sussex (I live here). But the MY, despite supposedly being "just a 3 on steroids" feels way bigger (even if it isn't; I've not compared dimensions). I took one for a test drive around the countryside near Gatwick and it feels like a bit of a barge compared to my 3. Something to bear in mind, and you'll see this immedialtely if you test drive one. It's tall, too.
 

WannabeOwner

Well-Known Member
Nov 2, 2015
6,911
3,659
Suffolk, UK
I'm afraid that my wife would have difficulties with the size and manoeuvrability

My wife thinks all Tesla are big (for UK and compared to things like Golf that she drove before).

Car parks are another problem. Those with spiral ramps don't fit bigger, modern, cars / SUVs.

I've never tried the Y but I believe it's a great car very similar to the 3 but bigger.

I think "taller" rather than "bigger". In terms of driving it seems to me to be about the same as the M3 in terms of positioning it on the road.
 
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GeorgeSymonds

Active Member
Moderator
Mar 16, 2018
2,014
1,862
UK
You do need to look into insurance before you go any further. A number of questions will be about how long you’ve lived in the uk and been driving here, and Teslas are in the highest groups, you may find insurance very expensive to start with on a Tesla.

Web sites like tesla-info.com include listings of new and used cars, and cars listed at dealers and at tesla. It can make interesting reading, especially depreciation charts and comparisons. You can see how the prices have changed over time.

In your situation I think I’d ignore the M3, there are no cheap ones unless they have done a lot of miles and they are better built now than they used to be. If you look at the Model S then there have been lots of changes over the years too. The website mentioned above does explain them all. I have owned a S, 3 and now Y and I have not found size a big issue.

Finally, how will you charge it? You might be better doing a short term rental as mentioned above until you understand how things are here in the uk.
 

Jason71

Active Member
May 8, 2019
4,144
4,441
Shropshire
I really appreciated the model 3 and drive it more that 50'000 km but I believe the price is very high in UK 2nd hand market, I'm afraid it will loose a great value in 3 years (and the space available could have been better).
Currently about 2% of used cars in the UK are BEV and 2% PHEV but (partly due to the fuel prices) 25-30% of enquires on used cars on Autotrader are for electric vehicles. So why do you think the M3 is going to lose a lot of value. I think a lot of people are going to be chasing not many cars in the used electric market for a long time to come. BEV's made up only 11% of new sales last year. but more than 11% of used buyers are looking to buy them now let alone in 3 years when those hit the used market. Mine has lost 7% from new in 2 1/2 years that is somewhat unprecedented. I am not suggesting it will be quite this good going forward (yes I had the grant) .But I cannot see depreciation being at the historic levels for ICE cars any time soon.
 
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WannabeOwner

Well-Known Member
Nov 2, 2015
6,911
3,659
Suffolk, UK
So why do you think the M3 is going to lose a lot of value

I agree with you that 2nd hand market is very likely to be strong.

In 3 years time the people looking for 2nd hand will match the (increasing) number of people buying new. But the available 2nd market will only be the, considerably smaller, number of vehicles sold today. i.e. Sellers-Market.

But ... given its the UK I wonder if, as MY starts to become available 2nd hand, whether there will be a significant skew to buyers wanting Hatchback. Basically the same as when people bought M3 Boot (new) because hatchback was not available.

I suppose I could make the same argument for M3 sales 2nd hand once MY is also available 2nd hand. MY more expensive than M3, so 2nd buyers will buy M3 as a stopgap until their next 2nd hand purchase, when they will then have the opportunity to consider 2nd hand hatchback, in their price range.

I also think that Tesla is deliberately keeping the 2nd price high. Their trade in offers are good, so they get their hands on many / most of them. They then set the sale price, and can force that up. In USA the Lease contract has changed from "You can buy out the lease when it ends" to "No buy out permitted, all vehicles return to Tesla" - which also looks like a price strengthening move.

That would suggest that O/P planning to sell on his car in 3 years time will get a good price. If mileage and age stay within warranty that would help (which might negate buying high mileage / old 2nd had car)

I can't see 2nd hand EV market being anything other than a sellers-market unless:

Major flaw is uncovered on the Model / Brand. Like the battery fires on Bolt in USA/

New price tumbles ...

GB£ dramatically strengthens against the US$ (I'm not betting on that one!).
New higher density, cheaper, batteries come onstream. Same kWh from fewer cells, thus battery lighter, thus more range for same kWh (could happen).
Over production of capacity in Battery Factories (in an increasing EV market, that seems unlikely too - Musk said something like the world needing 100 Giga Factories for batteries to satisfy 100% of new vehicle demand.)
 

Jason71

Active Member
May 8, 2019
4,144
4,441
Shropshire
But ... given its the UK I wonder if, as MY starts to become available 2nd hand, whether there will be a significant skew to buyers wanting Hatchback. Basically the same as when people bought M3 Boot (new) because hatchback was not available.

I wondered that, especially with the M3 price rises, but in March the MY and M3 sales were similar despite years of pent up demand for the MY. People were ordering and getting MY in a few weeks before GF Shanghai shutdown. So I think even Tesla over estimated the demand relative to the M3 hence the MY being on a few weeks delivery and the M3 upto 10 months. To me it looks like Tesla planned for too much MY production for the UK and not enough M3. All of which bodes well for M3 sales new and second hand in future.
 
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UkNorthampton

TSLA - 12+ startups in 1
Jun 15, 2019
1,167
9,490
Northampton, England
For 3 years, perhaps better availability (the lease firm may have speculatively ordered many - get at next delivery May/June), I'd lease and take any colour they had in stock. Even better if your employer can do salary sacrifice (pay out of gross pay, not after tax pay).

There are threads for insurance. LV were best for me, but it seems to depend on location and other factors. More choice for 3 insurance than Y, this should change.

First salary sacrifice link I found, plenty more. Salary Sacrifice

Assuming employed, depends on who your employer is (UK, Swiss) and type of employment (own company UK/Switzerland, seconded to UK, fixed term UK contract, full-time UK employee etc)
 
Curious that you sold your Swiss Tesla "because the steering is on the wrong side".
Driving a LHD car here isn't hard, as thousands of tourists find every year.

There is no problem registering a European specification car in the UK. In 1999 we returned from Germany and kept the Mercedes E 250 estate for some years. Insurance was about 5% higher than it would have been. You probably need a specialist broker, and will need proof that you have been driving overseas and don't have any points or convictions.

Not sure what the VAT/Duty rules are now, but as CH isn't in the EU and UK is also outside, unless there have been changes there shouldn't be any surprises, as long as you have owned the car for 6 months.
 
Thanks everyone for the answers and links it's very helpful ! 🙏🙏🙏 I really enjoy the Tesla community all around the world.

Few of u advise me for a 3 to 4 years old model S, in the Swiss market that would have been the better choice for keeping the value. They are fewer cars in the market (TM3 was the number 1 car sell in 2021 in Switzerland!) I think the Y will do better than the 3 and it could be a problem in the future for the 2nd hand market. As some of u mentioned it actually the market is pretty tense and a lot of people want to switch electric so it's not guaranteed...

I've also noticed that insurances will kill me because I don't have a record in UK, what can I do for it? I have no accident record for the past 15/20 years. Should I ask a proof from my last insurance?

The insurance market is so different from Switzerland...

Finally I don't understand how to get a quote 3 week in advance if I want to buy a second hand car? They can make me an offer in advance?

For the payment I thought I could buy with my savings, is it a good option ?

Maybe I should take a order for model Y but I can't wait this summer for having a car. I'm actually renting and it cost a lot...
Thanks for the advice with short term lease I will look into it, could be the solution.

Finally I've sold my TM3 because I've read that insurance will kill me with the left driving in an European car and I thought it could be tricky to drive 3 years like that (for 6 month maybe).
It kept a good value (lost 30% after 2.5 years and 55'000 km) but not comparable to the case of Jason71.
 

Jason71

Active Member
May 8, 2019
4,144
4,441
Shropshire
It kept a good value (lost 30% after 2.5 years and 55'000 km) but not comparable to the case of Jason71.
well i haven't actually sold mine yet (22K miles) but that was based on the trade in offer Tesla made me. Sadly due to the Shanghai shutdown the 60day window will expire so I will have roll the dice again when I get a more stable delivery date.
 

Mr H

Active Member
Jan 6, 2020
2,572
2,846
Manchester
The insurance market is so different from Switzerland...

Finally I don't understand how to get a quote 3 week in advance if I want to buy a second hand car? They can make me an offer in advance?
use sites like

gocompare
comparethemarket
confused.com
moneysavingsupermarket

and tick the 'i don't have the car yet' option to get a quote up to 30 days in advance. You can do this as many times as you like, the further from collection day the better as the price will be lower.
 

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