Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk with Tesla RoadsterEnlarge Photo
Sometimes, it's nice to have a shiny new car sitting in your garage, knowing that you own it.
At others, it's preferable to pay a modest amount for it each month knowing that, in two or three years, it will be taken away and is no longer your problem.
The latter is what we know as leasing, and it's one part of a 'creative financing' route that Tesla CEO Elon Musk believes people will increasingly turn to in future--as the most consumer-friendly option currently available.
For the Model S, the benefits of leasing are clear to see.
Lease pricing is affected by several factors, but among them is the value of the car after you're done with it. A car that depreciates heavily will feature a higher lease price as the car is worth less at the end of the term, reducing the resale value for the company setting the lease.
Musk has ensured the Model S has a competitive lease price by personally guaranteeing the future value of the cars. By promising they won't depreciate more than that of the Mercedes-Benz S-Class luxury sedan, it keeps the lease price relatively low. Not only that, but Musk said he'll buy back the cars at the agreed price.
This 'creative financing' is where Musk says the next growth wave in the EV market will stem from, reports Seeking Alpha.
It makes the total cost of ownership more appealing to the consumer, boosting demand. Among the means Tesla has taken to this end is its website cost calculator, highlighting the reduction in costs a consumer can expect if they buy a Model S.
There's a consumer confidence element too.
All automakers with plug-in cars offer varying battery warranties, but there's no greater warranty than knowing your car is being looked after by somebody else.
If you own your car you may, some day down the line, be faced with the decision to replace the battery. By leasing, you take away the worry of these potential expenses, making it a compelling option for plug-in vehicle owners.
It works for Musk-backed Solar City too, where many customers pay for the privilege of solar panels on their roof, but have the luxury of knowing someone else takes care of their upkeep.
And spurred by enticing deals, a high proportion of electric cars sold in the U.S. today are done so on a lease basis. Customers have already figured out that it offers them the best value, and the greatest security for the future.
Do you buy or lease your electric car? Whether or not you do, let us know why in the comments section below.