Electric van residual values higher than diesel counterparts

Used electric vans command higher prices than that of electric cars and diesel vans, research by Vahana Automotive has shown. Average three-year electric van residual values stand at an incredible 73.3% after the Plug-in Vehicle Grant (PiVG), compared with 52.9% for diesel vans.

Electric van registrations

While the demand for electric cars has been growing quite rapidly over recent years, the electric van market is still in the embryonic stage. Of the 60,000 plug-in vehicles sold in the UK in 2018, less than 1,000 were vans with the Nissan eNV200 (585) and Renault Kangoo ZE (315) leading the charge.

“Electric or alternative fuel accounted for 2.54% of new car registrations, whereas its just 0.28% of vans” explained Liam Campbell, Commercial Vehicle Consultant at Vahana Automotive.

“This is largely attributed to the fact that vans are a business tool and downtime is far costlier – most buyers don’t want to take the gamble with new technology. There’s also the range issue; vans on average cover more miles than cars and, in the case of contracting work, the commute to the job site can vary from month to month”.

Lack of volume raises the resale

However, as electric technology continues to prove itself, the demand for electric vans is showing signs of significant growth. The number of electric vans registered in 2019 surpassed last year’s total in July, and there’s an increasing number looking for used electric vans.

Electric van residual values
Electric van residual values

Vahana Automotive compared the prices of over 100 electric vans with their diesel equivalents and found that the increased demand, combined with the sheer lack of volume coming through to the used market, has led to electric van residual values are 38.9% higher than their diesel counterparts when the PiVG (Plug-in Vehicle Grant) was taken into consideration.

At three years old, the average electric van was selling for 58.6% of its original list price, and this raised to 73.3% when the 20% PiVG was taken off, while diesel vans retained just 52.9% value. It’s worth mentioning, however, that the average electric van covered just 7,945 miles, compared with 41,721 miles of the diesel vans.

Future van residual values

As electric technology continues to prove itself, the demand for electric vans will continue to rise and manufacturers have responded to this by rolling out new models. There are no fewer than 10 new electric vans scheduled for launch in the next year (see our Electric Van Guide) and a further three already planned for 2021.

However, you’d be wrong to assume this wave of new arrivals is enough to quench the appetite of the market. A huge proportion of the UK allocation has already been snapped up by large fleets (and all, in the case of one manufacturer) which means few are left over for retail customers. These retail customers are left to search in the used market, helping to maintain the high residual values.

Electric Van Guide - a guide to electric vans and LCVs