Gas may be cheap, and trucks and SUVs may be the darlings of the day among new-car buyers, but those shopping in the pre-owned arena – consumers who are already attuned to saving some dough – are apparently still looking to spend less money at the pump.
Of the 10 fastest-selling used cars – that is, those which spend the least amount of time on the market before changing hands – five are either hybrids, plug-in hybrids, or full-electric models. That’s according to a recent analysis of over 2.2 million listings of one-to-three-year-old vehicles conducted by the used-car website iSeeCars.com.
The leaders in this regard are the Toyota Prius Plug-In Hybrid, and the Nissan Leaf and Tesla Model S EVs. While the average used vehicle takes 42 days to sell, according to the website’s data, the Prius Plug-In spends the least amount of time on the market at just 19.7 days. One might expect the Tesla Model S – which remains in demand as a new vehicle among affluent buyers – is taking an average of only 26.1 days before being driven off by their second owners. But what may come as a surprise to some is that the Nissan Leaf, with new-model sales down by 39.3% so far this year, lasts for a mere 24.3 days on the pre-owned market.
And that’s all without federal (and in some cases state) tax incentives granted to buyers of brand-new EVs and PHEVs.
Other alt-fuel used cars among the 10 fastest sellers are the Lexus CT 200h and Toyota Highlander Hybrid; also included is gasoline-powered subcompact Mazda2 that gets a frugal 35 mpg on the highway.
One explanation for brisk sales among hybrids and EVs on the second-hand market would be that despite the prevalence of cheap gasoline, car buyers still care about fuel economy. A just-issued survey conducted by Consumers Union found that 60% of respondents said they are willing to pay more for a fuel-efficient vehicle if the added costs could be recouped in gas costs within five years.
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Forbes / Autos