As 2020 came to a close, we looked at the depreciation of a few Tesla models to see what the data told us.

Covid-19 caused global disruption in many ways, and the knock-off effects for the used car market were surprising. With factories shut down, people opting for personal transport to minimize the risk of getting sick, used cars as a whole were in demand.

Tesla Model X 2020 Depreciation -13% on average

When the Covid-19 lockdown started, the global economy shut down. Tesla was no different in terms of the used car market. Prices plunged as people were forced to stay at home. The different model year Model X's dropped 3% - 6% in one month. A normal drop in price would be -0.8% - 1.8%. This drop was about 3x worse.

2020 Covid Bump of Tesla Model X Prices

But as people started to get back to their routine to the best of their abilities in 2020, demand started to kick back and dealers started seeing contactless purchases. The Model X did not lose much value from May until September and this in turn seemed to be in line with the Second Wave. It is likely that Tesla was seeing this as well, because in October, the Model S saw a price drop on new cars.

Model S -15% Average Drop Across All Models
2020 Tesla Model S Monthly Depreciation

In addition to the market drop in Q4 for used cars, the Model S also had another drop due to the new cars having a drop in price of $5,000. This in turn led to a delayed, yet additional downturn in pricing and the S had a slightly larger depreciation compared to the Model X.

Model 3 -11% Drop on Average in 2020

The Tesla Model 3 on the other hand saw unprecedented demand if you look at the value of the vehicles in the market. Not only did the 3 not drop as much but it had a higher rebound, and infact an appreciation in value in some cases. This is most likely why Tesla was aggressive in keeping the factories running. New cars across the board were in short supply pushing up the used car prices (especially for pickup trucks), but the Model 3 just kept doing well until Q4.

2020 Tesla Model 3 Depreciation

As can be seen in the charts, Keemut predicts valuations up to eight weeks out into the future based on past results. It will be interesting to see how our models do with the 2020 data in our dataset.

Methodology

We looked at the vehicles for sale and sold in various markets to see what supply and demand looked like. Since trim, mileage, and other factors would skew the depreciation data, we normalized it for vehicles to 15,000 miles. Model Y was not added due to too much noise in our model.

In the Keemut valuation models, we look at multiple other factors that we can access from the vehicle, but are not readily available in the public. Having items such as battery data, driving habits, and charging habits helps us formulate a better valuation, but we ignored those in this study.

FSD Added To Valuation

One of the other parameters that we look at in valuations of vehicles, is Over-The-Air upgrades. We feel that certain OTA updates can increase the value of a car, and the Full-Self Driving (FSD) upgrade is one of those options. The data we show above does not differentiate between FSD and non-FSD but on average this OTA did help reduce depreciation on Teslas.

How A Keemut Report Helped A Customer Get More 💰

One international user whom we spoke to who sold his Model 3 for 7% above the price his target price. Our models were predicting the price range to be higher than what he originally listed his car to be sold for and once he saw the Keemut report, he re-listed his car. He sold his car within two weeks which indicates to us that the demand for Teslas is quite high.

About Keemut

Keemut has patented the way to collect data and price out valuations for used cars based on how they are driven. Users can get many features to get the most out of their connected car with the Keemut platform.