Out of 82 BEVs and PHEVs that are either currently available for sale in the US, or expected to be so by the end of 2022, 67 of them, or 81.7%, have a base manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) higher than $39,999, according to new analysis from EVAdoption. Fifteen or 18.3% have a base MSRP below $40,000 and 31 or 37.8% are at $70,000 or higher. (See notes and methodology at the end of this article.)
Average Transaction Prices
The actual transaction price that consumers are paying for electric vehicles is of course much higher when delivery charges, sales tax, fees, options, and upgrades including everything from paint color and wheel options to driver assist systems are added to the base MSRP. Then throw in the current trend of dealer markups known as “dealer market adjustments” or DMAs. Not all dealers add these markups, but many do and they can range from just a few hundred dollars up to $50,000 or more (which I personally saw on a Mercedes-Benz EQS SUV recently). DMAs of $5,000 to $7,500 are relatively common among luxury EVs. Add all of these additional costs up and buyers can easily pay $10,000-$15,000 more for an EV than the base MSRP. According to Kelley Blue Book, the average transaction price for an EV in the US in September 2022 was $65,291, which is $17,197 more than the $48,094 average transaction price of all vehicles.
On the positive side, 55% or 45 of the EVs that are or will be available in 2022 have a base MSRP below $60,000. And while there are no EVs available today below $20,000, there are five that have a base MSRP below $30,000 including the popular selling Chevrolet Bolt EV and EUV. Eighteen or 22% of EVs have a base MSRP of $80,000 or higher including 14 that are priced above $100,000.
Mean and Median EV MSRPs
The mean MSRP across both BEVs and PHEVs is $75,637 while the mean for BEVs is $66,520 and $87,879 for PHEVs, however that includes two Ferrari PHEVs that cost $625,000 and $322,986. When not including the two Ferraris, the mean MSRP of the PHEVs drops to $64,479, about $2,000 less than the mean BEV MSRP. The median MSRP of all the EVs is $56,900, a significant $18,737 less than the mean MSRP.
EVs With an Increase in MSRP Rose an Average of $3,879 in the Last Year
We also compared current MSRPs to those of the same EVs from earlier in 2022. Unfortunately, the MSRPs for the EVs were updated in our database on different dates so we cannot do an exact apples-to-apples comparison. However, we did find that the current MSRP increased an average of $1,396 (including those with no increase or a decrease) from earlier in 2022, with a median change of $0. However, when only including the EVs with an actual increase in MSRP, the average change was $3,879 and the median rise was $3,305. The price increases since earlier this year or late in 2021 are generally due to the rising costs of batteries and other components, supply chain issues, inflation, and the fact that for many of the popular EVs, demand simply outstrips supply.
The largest increases were with two Ford BEVs: a $12,000 increase for the Lightning Pro and an $11,080 rise in MSRP for the Mustang Mach-E Premium (SR) – EAD. The three EVs with the largest price drops were the Chevrolet Bolt EUV ($6,300), Chevrolet Bolt EV ($5,900), and Volkswagen ID.4 ($3,735).
Lack of Affordable EVs Remains a Key Hurdle to Mass Adoption
By the end of 2022 there will be at least 80 EVs available in the US, a growing spectrum of model types including pickups, growing awareness of EV models and their advantages, and with most BEVs having near or at least 250 miles of range (many with near or more than 300). As a result, perhaps the two biggest hurdles to mass adoption in the US are now a poor public charging experience and the lack of many EVs available at around or under $30,000. Most automakers have been focused on bringing higher-end EVs to market that is within reach of higher-income early adopters. And in fact, there are very few low-priced EVs on the way, with GM’s Chevrolet Equinox being the most promising high-volume BEV with a target MSRP of around $30,000 and expected to arrive at dealers in the fall of 2023.
Notes and Methodology
EVs analyzed for this article included all base trim model BEVs and PHEVs that are currently available in the US, or that are expected to be available by the end of the year. Models that were analyzed were only the least expensive trim and model variants. For example, we only analyzed the base Tesla Model S which is priced at $104,990, and not the Model S Plaid, which is priced at $135,990. The MSRP does not include destination and delivery fees, any taxes, tax credits or rebates, or any dealer market adjustments. Prices were obtained from automaker websites and based on a Northern California zip code. All model MSRPs were updated in the EVAdoption EV model database on October 26 and 27.