Tips for buying a second hand EV

The UK has become a big market for EVs. There has been growth in sales and the availability of different models in the last few years. As a result, in August 2023 there were around 850,000 EVs on the roads. On top of that, there were over 530,000 hybrids. The second hand market is now growing too, with more availability. But, there are some vital things to think about if you are thinking of buying a second hand EV. We want to look at them here, then if you need help with car broking, you can speak to us.

The condition of the battery

Car brokingWith EVs the most vital thing is the health of the battery. It is arguably the most important component in the whole vehicle. If it is in poor health, you won’t have a very nice driving experience. It would mean the range is much shorter than you expect. In addition, it can mean you need to charge more frequently, increasing your costs.

Even more importantly, it can cost a pretty penny if you need to replace the battery. It could easily be in the thousands depending on the make and model.

So, you should always check the battery health. See how much of the original capacity it can hold. If it is 90% or above after a few years, that is perfectly fine. However, if it is 75% or less, you should reconsider your purchase.

Service history

Traditionally one of the most important things to look at with a vehicle is the service history. It gives an idea of how well it has been maintained and can show how likely further issues are. Whether you buy from a dealer or choose car broking, it is vital to check the history of the vehicle.

However, this isn’t as important with EVs. The vehicles still need services, but they don’t check the motor. Instead, they focus on things like tyres, brakes, and suspension. There can also be longer durations between each service, with some only getting one every two years.


A crucial thing to check with EVs is warranties. You may find there is a separate one specifically for the battery. Most do, providing coverage for seven or eight years of use. That can be very useful. However, always consider the mileage the vehicle has done; it will mean the battery has had more charging cycles, so may have more degradation.

How will you charge it?

One thing we hear a lot in the UK is how the government, local councils and businesses are helping to improve the charging infrastructure. However, EV owners still do the majority of their charging at home. You must consider this before you commit to buying. Some second hand EVs won’t come with a charger or cables. This will be an additional cost to think about. You should also look at the cost of installing a point in your home if you need one.


Finally, consider your budget. A positive thing for buyers is the number of second hand EVs arriving on the market has pulled the prices down. So, you can now make your money go further. But, you need to think about the credentials of each vehicle. Some might have lower prices because the mileage and battery wear will be high. Earlier EVs may also lack crucial systems like liquid cooling.

Do you want to start car broking?

There are lots of great ways to enjoy a career involving cars. You don’t have to be a mechanic or a dealer either. One of the easiest things to get into is broking. Here you can work with dealers to source vehicles for their clients. In some cases you can work with buyers who are looking for models. Either way, your role will be to search for the right cars and facilitate agreements.

You can learn more about car broking on our website. Or, you can contact us directly. Then, if you want to get involved, you can buy our materials to give you everything you need.