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We can never underestimate the power of depreciation, even when it comes to Teslas. If you browse through the classifieds for a used Tesla Model 3 or, in some cases, a Model S, you can find some selling for under $25,000. That’s a steal, considering they retail new for over $40,000. But is it really a good idea to buy a used Tesla for under $25,000?

Buying a cheap Tesla equates to age and high mileage

Although the thought of buying a $25,000 Tesla Model 3 or Model S may sound like a dream, the cheap price tag comes with a couple of caveats. First, the cheapest Tesla Model S examples that we found on CarGurus in the $20,000 range were 2013 to 2015 models, which may not be appealing to some shoppers.

Second, the Model S examples that we found all had close to or more than 100,000 miles. Yes, that’s a lot, so some issues or wear and tear is to be expected. Additionally, many of the cars we found were lower-trim RWD 85D and 75D models, which may not suit some buyers’ needs – especially if AWD is a must-have.

It’s the same story when searching for Model 3 examples, which is the brand’s entry-level car. Many of the cars that we found for cheap had well over 100,000 miles on the odometer. However, the good news is that there were a few long-range models and even one Model 3 Performance for that price.

If the mileage or age of the car doesn’t matter, many buyers could benefit from purchasing a $25,000 Tesla.

Some high-mileage Teslas could have issues

Although a Tesla with high mileage and some age may not matter to some buyers, there are some common issues to watch out for. For example, battery degradation is real, which means that over time, the battery won’t hold as much of a charge as before. In that case, a battery replacement could be needed.

Tesla’s battery warranty covers some models (like the Model S) for eight years or 150,000 miles, whichever comes first. That means that any car younger than 2015 could have its battery replaced under warranty if needed. But owners of older cars will have to pay out of pocket, which can cost over $10,000, depending on the cost of parts and labor.

One story from Current Automotive shows that a battery replacement can cost over $16,000. Other issues to keep in mind are routine maintenance items. Many owners in the Tesla Owners Club reported that changing some suspension components, brakes, and tires could be necessary when owning an older Tesla.

Buying a cheap Tesla can be a good idea for cautious shoppers

The biggest potential issue when purchasing a $25,000 Tesla is replacing the battery. Otherwise, shoppers can expect to deal with normal maintenance items like gas-powered cars. As always, we recommend shopping with a bit of caution when looking for an older Tesla and having a pre-purchase inspection done before bringing it home.