What you need to know about remarketing EVs
There are many things fleet managers must know about the remarketing of electric vehicles. The de-fleeting process, logistics of moving and storing EVs, plus how residual values are calculated, all revolve around one thing – the battery.
The battery health of a second-hand EV is crucial to assessing its value in the market and when it should be de-fleeted. The remarketing industry has become increasingly savvy at exploiting data to assess the value and market potential of used vehicles, and to set prices accordingly. But where EVs are concerned it’s early days and the remarketing world is just beginning to find its way.
Very little data to go on
“We’ve only just seen the first wave of EVs coming through remarketing,” says Martin Forbes (pictured), President, Cox Automotive International, “but there’s very little data about the battery health of those early models. The battery is the most important and expensive element in them and we need more information about its condition when it comes to remarketing.”
Cox Automotive operates one of the largest and busiest wholesale marketplaces for cars and LCVs across Europe, selling on average 450,000 vehicles a year. The company offers a choice of channels through which buyers and sellers can transact used car deals, including making it easier to buy and sell across borders – a sure-fire way to strengthen RVs.
“Vendors have relied on Cox Automotive to help achieve the optimum price for vehicles quickly through using our services. Buyers know they can rely on us to provide insights and data that help them select the right vehicles with confidence – and this includes EVs.”
Providing that crucial EV data
Cox acquired Spiers New Technologies (SNT) in 2021, which is a leading full-service provider of “4R” services (repair, re-manufacturing, refurbishing and repurposing) of advanced battery packs used in hybrid and electric vehicles. The acquisition followed a successful collaboration between the two businesses in building a unique and comprehensive battery health diagnostic tool on SNT’s software platform ALFRED.
“We're experts in understanding the health of a used battery, and through ALFRED we can provide diagnostics all the way down to individual battery cell level. This means we can provide the most cost-effective service for our customers through those 4Rs. Instead of replacing the whole battery, it could be that a simple refurbishment (replacing only damaged cells) is a more cost-effective and environmentally-friendly solution.”
Through its proprietary software platform, Cox Automotive is also able to collect, manage and process battery-related data, which it plans to use to further optimise the remarketing of EVs in the future.
“You can’t get this data from OEMs right now, you can only get a limited data set that doesn’t give the full story of battery health. So, we are aiming to fill that void. What we understand about the degradation of EV battery health, coupled with our comprehension of the remarketing world across Europe, will help customers optimised that de-fleeting process.”
It's obvious that the EV is a different beast when it comes to remarketing and requires a whole new approach, process and facilities. That said, remarketing as a sector is used to having to change and adapt quickly to new developments.
6 things to consider when de-fleeting and remarketing EVs
- Storage – think about how you will store EVs in terms of fire safety and how you will deal with the issue of EVs arriving with zero or low charge? It’s common for de-fleeted ICE vehicles to arrive with empty fuel tanks. The same applies to EVs but the difference is they cannot be topped up simply from a Jerry can
- Charging – do you have onsite chargers at your storage facility?
- Transportation – EVs are much heavier than ICEs so fewer can be transported at once due to transporter weight limits.
- Safety – batteries can be volatile and EV batteries are no different. Safety must be considered when storing and transporting EVs.
- Legislation – new legislation across the EU determines stakeholder responsibility throughout the remarketing process in terms of battery disposal and handling. Make sure you’re compliant or work with a third party, like Cox Automotive, to ensure compliance.
- Technicians – do you employ on-site technicians qualified in the technical aspects of EV handling?