Trade-In Through Tesla

Trade-In Through Tesla

I am a California non-owner, reserved 3/31 just prior to the reveal, with a Jan - Mar Delivery Estimate.

Has anyone had any experience with trading in their current vehicle through Tesla? I am wondering what they may offer as I don't look forward to selling on my own.

Please forgive me if this has been covered - I couldn't find a thread pertaining to this. Thank you!

ebmcs03 | 10/01/2018

Try taking it to car max. There has been a few posts that I remember reading. You get a text message estimate or something like that. And it’s really low.

PhillyGal | 10/01/2018

It's been a long while but in December 2014 we traded in a 4-door Jeep Wrangler through Tesla. Wrangler's have a pretty good reputation for holding value. We didn't do much research and had no desire to sell on our own but did get a second estimate (Carmax) and found Tesla's value competitive so we did that.

I plan to do the same with a 2013 Hyundai Genesis Coupe when I get my Model 3. Not only is it easier, in PA/Philly, you are only charged sales tax on the difference between the purchase price and trade-in. Which means someone else would have to beat Tesla's trade-in by 8% to even match, let alone be worth the extra effort.

PhillyGal | 10/01/2018

Wranglers... it didn't own anything.

rtanov | 10/01/2018

I am picking my TM3 tomorrow and trading-in my 2017 Leaf. This will save a significant chunk of the sales tax. I listed the Leaf on Craigslist and Ebay last week and got few offers. Took it to Carmax yesterday and got a very good offer - $1k higher that the best private offer. Tesla were able to match that which will save me part of the sales tax. I was initially not considering trading it in, happy I did.

chance.duncan | 10/01/2018

Don't most states allow you to apply even the private sale of a vehicle toward the purchase of another for a sales tax break, if done within a reasonable time frame? Here in AR, I can either trade in a car and only pay sales tax on the difference between the trade value and the purchase price, or I can sell a car and get the same incentive as long as I get another within 60 days or so.

rxlawdude | 10/01/2018

Not California. You pay tax on the full amount. The ultimate buyer pays sales tax on your traded in vehicle (for which you paid sales tax).

Nice, huh?

Sam_S | 10/01/2018

In California, the sales tax applies to the full price of the vehicle without considering trade-ins. Thus, the taxable price of your new vehicle will still be considered to be $100,000 despite your trade-in accounting for $50,000 of the price.

rtanov | 10/01/2018

@chance.duncan, I wasn't even aware of this... did a quick search and could not find anywhere stated that the private sale would apply as tax credit in Ohio. Anyways, my trade-in appraisal was higher than the private offers I got :-)

CASEMAN | 10/01/2018

Thank you for the insight and ideas. I was disappointed with Carmax when I took my Corvette in a few years ago and did much better selling through Autotrader. I will give them another shot and check in with Tesla as well to avoid the hassle of selling it myself. Thanks again, everyone!

AJPHL | 10/01/2018

I don’t think many people in the market for a used ‘vette think of going to Carmax? I imagine Carmax has a “sweet spot” for vehicles it is most interested in i.e. easiest to sell. They will lowball accordingly if they don’t really want the vehicle or think it will sit on the lot a while.

PeterPlt | 10/01/2018

Do the math. For instance, if you have a local/state sales tax of 7%, then CarMax or your neighbor who covets your "baby" needs to pay you 7% more than Tesla's offered trade-in value for you to break even (disregarding the potential risks and administrative hassles associated with a second outside deal.

If Tesla is within a % or two of that hurdle, I'm willing to go for the Easy Button. What about you?

TheChad | 10/01/2018

AJ - you’d be surprised at what carmax will buy. They have had a Ferrari on the lot of the one near me. They will also buy your car and wholesale it out. It’s great to go to them to get a competitive offer and in most cases Tesla will match their offer so you can save the sales tax on difference; if applicable in your state.

AJPHL | 10/01/2018

Oh I am sure they will buy anything given their scale, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they are not the best offer for every vehicle model, and so some folks will go private sale instead. I would be curious how that Ferrari owner made out compared to KBB...

rcobbjr | 10/01/2018

@PhillyGal How easy was it to trade in through Tesla? I too bought and sold through Carmax in King of Prussia and it was a breeze. Great point on the savings for PA sales tax by paying on the difference of trade in. I would even take a lower price if Tesla makes it easy on the trade. '15 Honda Pilot. Carmax I'm sure would take it and sell in minute.

lilbean | 10/01/2018

Trading in to Tesla could not have been easier. Tesla sent a third party to take pictures and appraise the car. I received an email afterword telling me the trade in amount. You aren't supposed to go over 1000 miles over the mileage. Then I left the car and drove off with the Tesla on delivery day. Easy peasy.

chance.duncan | 11/01/2018

Wow, I thought the sales tax based on trade in vs purchase price difference was more universal. There have been several times where my sales tax on a new (to me) car was zero or very near it. In fact, if there difference is $2,500 or less they don't even charge tax.

And get this, we used to even get the same incentive when trading in a leased car prior to 2013 or 2012. They did away with that though so now trading in a lease is even more foolhardy than being willing to deal with the inevitable negative equity.

Totally OT, but this forum could use some work. No thread subscriptions or notices, no search feature, what gives?

PhillyGal | 11/01/2018

@rcobbjr - Like lilbean said, it was a breeze. I don't even recall the steps it was so unmemorable. (As in, didn't require much effort.)

AJPHL | 11/01/2018

This is good info as I’d always assumed I’d be best to offload my ICE via private sale, and have been keeping meticulous service records to support that future effort.
Does Tesla give a crap though how often the oil was changed or whether it was done by a manufacturer-trained tech versus whatever jiffy lube has the current oil change special? Maybe I could save a few $$$ on maintenance during my last months of ownership if it appears only the mileage and visible wear and tear matter...

liftsrock | 11/01/2018

@chance.duncan - Here in Ohio we pay sales tax on the difference between the new car selling price and the used car trade-in only if the used car is traded in to the car dealer. If you sell it on your own, you do not get to deduct its price from the price of the new car when paying sales tax. This sales tax structure is something that state lawmakers have implemented because the automobile dealers association has a strong lobby. Other types of equipment do not get this treatment favorable to the equipment buyer.

rtanov | 11/01/2018

BTW, I got delivery today - they specifically requested the Carmax appraisal that I got the other day. They told me that they are going to just turn the car to Carmax with that appraisal. Nice of them because it saved me >$1k in taxes na dmade the delivery much smoother.

CASEMAN | 11/01/2018

rtanov - Congrats on your new car!!

That is pretty great that they cut out Carmax for you.