As a seller of mainly new e-bikes, customers often ask us about the resale market for e-bikes in general, should they need to sell the bike they are about to buy. We also handle consignment sales of used bikes for customers and occasionally sell of our own demo and rental units at a less than new price. So- what's the used e-bike market like?
In a nutshell, it's great, if you are a seller and you're selling a good quality bike, at the right price. If your bike is well maintained both in terms of its components, but also its appearance you can expect your used e-bike to hold its value well over what it might cost you to rent or lease a bike for the same period of time, at the very least, plus reap all the other benefits of the fuel savings and health positives in the meantime. For instance, any of our $3,000 and $4,000 e-bikes, if maintained should still sell in a year or two for something close to 2/3 their retail value. That means, if you buy a $4,000 e-bike and sell it in a year, you've basically rented an ebike for less than $100 per month.
If you are a buyer, things are less in your favor mainly because there aren't many good quality used bikes on the market and when there are, they tend to hold their value, in the sellers favor. And, those deals you see online where the seller is selling a no-name brand really cheap- well, generally they are trying to get paid to get you to take something out of their garage that doesn't work very well, or at all.
On a weekly basis, we talk to people on the phone who have some way or another "inherited" a non-working no-name or some times name-brand used e-bike. Either by paying very little for something that has been sitting in a garage for years and is now either going to the dump, the side of the house or your garage, or your side of the house. Or, by taking on something for free- the caller wants us to dive in to the hours long project of advising, reviewing, diagnosing, sourcing parts and fixing a dead e-bike that was given to them for free or almost free. Never buy or take on an e-bike that isn't running well. It's rarely worth it and 9 times out 10, the previous owner has already tried and failed to get the broken e-bike running again and now wants pass his lump of aluminum on to you. As a general rule of thumb never get an e-bike you can't try.