how is this possible in France?

Between a high ecological bonus and a lower price than our European neighbors, the Tesla Model 3 can turn into a good plan for some people, who do not hesitate to buy it to part with it a few months later, selling it at the stranger. Explanations on this phenomenon which is gaining momentum in France.

Tesla Model 3 // Source: Unsplash – Stefan Lehner

It no longer needs to be presented as it is so popular: the Tesla Model 3 is a hit throughout Europe. Some versions are so successful that it becomes difficult not to have several months of waiting before being delivered. However, some owners do not hesitate to resell it after six months, to buy one in stride.

To find their way around, they take advantage of relatively low French prices, compared to other countries, as well as the rather permissive ecological bonus associated with the ease of selling to foreign importers. All this allows them to drive an almost new Tesla Model 3 every six months, without spending more money than if they had decided to keep their original vehicle. Let’s try to see more clearly about this trick that is hard to resist.

Unequal prices in Europe

In France, the Tesla Model 3 is available from 43,800 euros for the Propulsion version. You can opt for a Long Autonomy version from 53,990 euros, or the Performance version at 59,990 euros. All these prices do not take into account the ecological bonus: the end customer therefore generally pays less than these displayed prices.

The Tesla Model 3 Performance // Source: Frandroid

The game of paid options means that sometimes a different paint or rims will raise the bill above the maximum amount authorized to take advantage of the most advantageous ecological bonus (6,000 euros at present), which makes certain configurations difficult to justify financially.

For the configurations and prices that we have detailed previously, you will get a white Tesla Model 3, black interior, fitted with 18-inch wheels (20 inches for the Performance model) and equipped with the basic Autopilot. These are the configurations that we will compare below, the price of the options being quite similar in the different countries.

In Belgium, a border country, the prices are already very different: count 51,970 euros for the Model 3 Propulsion, 58,970 euros for the Long Autonomy version and 64,970 euros for the Performance version. There is no ecological bonus to be deducted, which automatically makes the vehicle much more expensive than in France.

We can also cite Italy, Portugal or the Netherlands as examples of neighboring countries which offer the Tesla Model 3 at a higher price than that practiced in France, thus making a French Model 3 very attractive in terms of prices. for neighboring buyers. Some examples of rates are summarized in the table below.

Country Propulsion Great Autonomy Performance
France €43,800 €53,990 €59,990
Belgium €51,970 €58,970 €64,970
Portugal €52,885 €59,975 €65,975
Denmark €55,140 €61,070 €66,610

A basic offer eligible for the maximum ecological bonus

As you probably know, in France, an ecological bonus is applicable to the purchase of a Tesla Model 3, under conditions. Its amount varies according to the price of the new vehicle: since July 26, 2021, it is 6,000 euros if the vehicle is sold for less than 45,000 euros, and 2,000 euros if its price is between 45,000 and 60,000 euros.

The interior of the Tesla Model 3 // Source: Frandroid

In this way, a Tesla Model 3 Propulsion in France will cost 37,800 euros if he does not accumulate other regional aid or conversion bonuses. If you go back to the table visible above, you will then notice that the price difference with the end customer in other countries becomes enormous: 14,170 euros with Belgium, and up to 17,340 euros with Denmark.

It didn’t take long for importers from these countries to start taking an interest in the French second-hand market, agreeing to pay slightly more than a potential French buyer, but with the assurance of making a significant profit on resale.

Thus, since the beginning of 2021 and the reduction in price of the Model 3 Propulsion (formerly Standard Autonomy Plus) which made it possible to benefit from the maximum ecological bonus, some no longer hesitate to part with their car to buy a new one. new, sometimes even making a capital gain in the operation.

A non-existent second-hand market in France

The second-hand Tesla Model 3 market in France is anemic, as dealers are having difficulty finding buyers at the desired prices. And for good reason, the vehicle has dropped in price many times, leaving a very small difference between what sellers want to get from their resale and the price of a new vehicle.

Indeed: who, today, would buy a used Tesla Model 3 Propulsion at 36,000 euros when the same new model is offered at 37,800 euros for example? In France, probably nobody. But in countries where the new vehicle costs 15,000 euros more, it can be very interesting.

Model 3 Tesla

In order not to have to reimburse the ecological bonus to the state, it is necessary to have kept the vehicle for at least 6 months, and to have driven 6,000 kilometres. There is no other clause preventing, for example, the owner of the vehicle from reselling it abroad, or to a professional. In this little game, companies have specialized in the purchase of electric vehicles, and in particular Tesla Model 3, by facilitating the operation as much as possible for the French seller.

Foreign importers who facilitate the operation

Take the example of one of the leaders in this market, EV-Remarketing. This is a company that wishes, ultimately, to offer an easier experience to sell your vehicle in Denmark, at an unbeatable price. In practice, a French Tesla Model 3 in the fall of 2021 was taken back for 37,500 euros with 12,000 kilometers and more than 6 months old, or only 300 euros less than a new one.


Suffice to say that it is very difficult to say no to such an offer, especially if we take into account the overall experience offered. You submit photos and details about your vehicle (date of entry into service, color, options, etc.), and within a few days you receive an offer by email to buy back the car. If you accept this offer, a carrier will pick up your vehicle directly from you, after you have received payment by bank transfer. In short, a much more pleasant experience for the seller than putting an ad online to sell to individuals.

It is even possible to plan the delivery of the new vehicle on a date that coincides with the passage of the carrier coming to collect the old Tesla Model 3, so that in the end, there is no day when we find ourselves without vehicle or with two vehicles. EV-Remarketing has understood that it had every interest in being quite permissive with French sellers: that the buy-in tariff seems attractive in France, the real good operation is indeed done by this Danish importer.

Tesla Model 3 Truck
A Tesla Model 3 ready to leave for Denmark

Anyway, this manipulation of taking advantage of the ecological bonus and the price differences between European countries has been going on for many months now, but we can imagine that as soon as the maximum ecological bonus disappears, it will no longer be so interesting to resell his Tesla Model 3 in this way.

The next reduction in the ecological bonus is scheduled for July 2022, where it will drop to 1,000 euros for new vehicles with a price between 45,000 and 60,000 euros, and to 5,000 euros for vehicles under 45,000 euros.

If the European Tesla Model 3 follows the evolution of prices that we see in the USA, it’s a safe bet that the level of 45,000 euros will be crossed in the coming months. But until then, some will undoubtedly continue to profit from reselling abroad at a bargain price.

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