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If not a Tesla, then what would you get?

jpaz

Member
Feb 11, 2018
83
31
Phoenix, AZ
My wife is thinking about an EV. She wants something small for short trips around town. We are going to test drive anything and everything we can think of but frankly, don't want to get a second Tesla (only for budget reasons). Just throwing this out to see what others feel they might do. I can create a pro and con list for just about all of the EVs I know about, but perhaps some of you have opinions or experiences with non-Tesla EVs you can share.

Thanks in advance.
 
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DOCAL

Member
May 5, 2016
487
878
San Jose, CA
One of the reasons I went with Tesla is that I wanted an EV that looks like a car. I don't know why so many car companies think "OK, it's an EV, lets make it look like something out of a bad sci-fi film". So for that reason I've always liked the e-Golf.
 

vkathuria

Member
Jan 9, 2017
43
33
Palo Alto
Same boat here. There is nothing else out there other than commuter cars, so the current plan is to bite the bullet and get a 2nd Tesla. Curious to know what else you find.
 
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skitown

Member
Dec 28, 2015
869
2,276
Central Idaho, U.S.A, Earth
My wife is thinking about an EV. She wants something small for short trips around town. We are going to test drive anything and everything we can think of but frankly, don't want to get a second Tesla (only for budget reasons). Just throwing this out to see what others feel they might do. I can create a pro and con list for just about all of the EVs I know about, but perhaps some of you have opinions or experiences with non-Tesla EVs you can share.

Thanks in advance.

If budget is the primary goal and short range works, I would 100% buy a used Nissan Leaf. Total bargains IMO based on crazy-bad depreciation that seem to have pretty much bottomed out in the $7-10K range. I would look for a 2013 SV, SL or newer.
 

woof

Fluffy Member
Supporting Member
Apr 30, 2009
1,588
1,904
I love the i3, and the volt. Both are pretty cheap used these days. LEAF in AZ...well, probably can get that REALLY cheap due to the battery issues.
 

2012MS85

Member
Apr 26, 2017
401
454
Blue Grass, IA
1. Cadillac ELR - amazing looks and great performance w/ 2+2 seating. $80k MSRP in 2014, but now only $25-30k used for a nice 2014 w/ low miles. I love mine and have had zero issues over the past 2 years since buying it “new” and untitled from a dealer. I put $20 of gas in it every 3 months; 98% of driving is pure electric from my solar panels. Once the batteries run out, it’ll go another 340 miles on its 9 gallons of gas :)

2. Chevy VOLT - less sexy than my ELR, and sans leather and heated seats. My 2013 model with 95k miles is my every day driver that I bought used in 2016 for $10k. Never had a problem with this EV either. And it also uses my home solar generation 98% of the time. More practical 4-passenger with as many doors. FYI, GM’s ELR & VOLT use the same technolgy; Cadi just wears fancier clothes.

3. BMW i3 REX - I’ve only admired this one from afar, as it’s now available used for $15-20k for a 2014-15 model. Has twice the pure EV local mile capability (80) versus ELR/VOLT (40).

Clearly your wife can buy new, if she likes. I am simply offering up some 4-5 year old models that have taken major depreciation and still may function like new (based on my experience). The ELR only had 2014 and 2016 models. The VOLT is obviously now on its 2nd generation with improved range (now over 50 miles). And the i3 also now has a bigger battery that exceeds 100 miles on BEV.
 
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McRat

Well-Known Member
Jan 20, 2016
5,771
6,077
LA
2016-2018 Volt. While normally used as a short range EV, it can double as a hybrid.
Unlike all other PHEVs, it has full power in EV mode and more than 50 miles of electric only range.
Deluxe 2017/2018's have the highest safety rating possible from both NHTSA and IIHS and come with adaptive cruise and HUD forward collision alert as well forward automatic braking.
Handles well, especially if you put performance tires on it, built well, and is quiet even in hybrid mode.

But a used ELR will attract attention and is quicker. Best version is the 2016 with performance package.
Perhaps one of the best looking coupes of the 21st century. I would not be surprised if some day the car becomes collectible, purely based on it's looks and low production numbers.

cadillac-elr_100359495_m.jpg
 
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slipnslider

Member
Apr 13, 2016
787
1,150
los angeles, ca
I'd get a used BMW i3 for a mere $20k. A third of the price of a new model 3. Great visibility. Spacious interior. Harmon Kardon sound system. Adaptive cruise control. And a gas generator to compensate for the small battery on the rare occasions I leave town.

Then in a few years I might get VW's new NEO EV, which looks pretty cool.
 
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RobStark

Well-Known Member
Jul 2, 2013
10,760
56,905
Los Angeles, USA
Awesome looking car, but the visibility looks terrible, and I imagine maintenance will be a nightmare since only a few thousand were built.

Do you mean finding parts for a collision repair?

Because the number of them made means didley squat for maintenance. It is Chevy Volt powertrain with widespread GM parts suspension.

Finding a door after a collision might be a problem.


As to the OP I would not get a passive cooled battery LEAF in Phoenix.

https://www.cars.com/vehicledetail/detail/732721542/overview/

Used 2017 Chevrolet Volt LT
$18,493
 
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Evoforce

Active Member
Apr 19, 2017
1,551
1,918
Fountain Hills AZ
If budget is the primary goal and short range works, I would 100% buy a used Nissan Leaf. Total bargains IMO based on crazy-bad depreciation that seem to have pretty much bottomed out in the $7-10K range. I would look for a 2013 SV, SL or newer.

The reason they have bottomed out is because of their poor battery longevity. I still own 2 of them. You are correct, they suffer great depreciation. I do have to admit that they are good cars in every other way. Just plan on battery replacements.
 
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TaoJones

Beyond Driven
Nov 10, 2014
3,064
3,028
The Americas
A yacht.

Perhaps not practical on land.

Tesla prices are sliding into the high 20Ks already. They had that round of higher mileage CPOs down to $32K about 6 months ago.

And all of those had included supercharging.

In a few years, wasn’t ridesharing supposed to supplant in-town car ownership?

The in-town pop culture choices (Leaf, Bolt) are fine until you want to go out of town.

I can’t countenance hybrids. Pick a side, as an exgf used to say about her more adventuresome friends.

Your mileage may indeed vary.
 
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