EVs Still Cost too Damn Much, and Prices Are Still Rising

Prices continue to increase for EVs, putting the brakes on the mass adoption automakers and the government was hoping for.

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2023 Nissan Leaf
2023 Nissan Leaf
Image: Nissan

Electric vehicle prices are continuing to rise. An analysis by iSeeCars shows that the prices of EVs outpaced the price of gas cars at a high rate, even as the prices of standard combustion-engined vehicles continue to rise.

While the price of all cars has been going up, the prices of EVs have shot up at a wild rate. iSeeCars analyzed data from 13.8 million vehicles sold between January and July in both 2021 and 2022. The data shows that ICE vehicle prices rose just 10.1 percent in July compared to the same time in 2021. EV prices, however, rose sharply, a staggering 54.3-percent in the same timeframe.

Of course, there are outside forces that can be factored in as the reason for the price increase. The global chip shortage is still happening, and prices for raw materials needed for components for EVs like lithium are still going up. Plus, high gas prices created a demand for EVs. While all EVs saw a price increase, some specific models saw more of an increase more than others.

Image for article titled EVs Still Cost too Damn Much, and Prices Are Still Rising
Screenshot: iSeeCars

The list of EVs with the highest increases is sort of surprising. At the top of the list is the Nissan Leaf. The Leaf saw an $8,930 price increase between summer ‘21 and summer ‘22. Its average used price is nearly $29,000. The Chevy Bolt is second on the list, seeing a $6,417 increase and an average used price of $28,291. This one is interesting considering Chevy gave the Bolt a controversial price cut to bring buyers back after its recall debacle. The rest of the list isn’t as surprising; Tesla has been bumping prices on models for a while.


Prices may not stay high forever, though. iSeeCars Executive Analyst Karl Brauer predicts moves like the Inflation Reduction Act will help as the tax credit reaches more models and brings more buyers in.

“More and more affordable new electric vehicles are entering the market, which means that used EVs won’t be as much of a novelty, especially once supply chain issues begin to improve,” he said.


But none of this is true yet. Cars are still becoming increasingly unaffordable, as their own data shows. And automakers seem reluctant to offer an EV with a decent range under $40,000, counting on the government to entice consumers with tax credits and rebates to bring prices down instead of just building cheaper models.

With automakers pushing forward on the electric transition and governments and states moving to effectively ban gas vehicles, some might want to slow down and take a step back and consider the affordability problem. Or this transition won’t go the way they think it will.