Leasing a car at 0% interest

Hi everyone,

I am evaluating the prospect of leasing a car under the current offer of 0% interest.
The fact that the interest rate is zero makes it very appealing.

I know that when you lease the car, practically you don’t own it. You just rent it.
The car company partners with a bank and an auto dealer as leasing partners.
According to the terms that I have seen so far, there is no clause which will allow me to buy the car at the end of the leasing period at the current residual value.
The auto dealer states that I can make an offer of that remaining amount and they will decide if they will give me the car. The customer service told me that they never had any case where they and their partner requested the return of the car and denied the sale at the residual value.

Leasing a car is something new to me and to be frank, it is the 0% interest rate that made me evaluate the option. I would like to ask:

  1. Is it normal in leasing contracts not to have the option to buy the car stated in the contract?
  2. Do you think that in the particular case of Tesla model Y, in 4 years time from now, the leasing company would decide to keep the car? The residual value is approx 20k CHF and since they are not making any profit, they may be tempted to sell me or some other client the car at a higher value. The leasing company told me that they look into the interest of the client and that the residual value is honoured but can someone rely only on good will?

Thank you.

I think 0% interest must be just marketing.

You should focus on following

  • what is the lease per month and does it make sense to you
  • if there is no residual value calculation, that means the leasing company prefers to get back the car. This means the lease cost covers for everything they expect (return on money, plus their idea of expected depreciation).
  • it seems they believe they have better chance to extra value from resale rather than offering a standard residual value calculation. I believe it’s because of the fact that electric cars are evolving market and it’s not clear how fast / slow they should be depreciated
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What does it mean they honour the residual value when they have not defined clearly what the residual value would be ?

If they are not signing a deal to sell you the car at residual value then you should not count on it. Just assume you need to return the car.

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If I remember right, @Cortana was able to adjust the contract to buy the Tesla. Maybe he can share his experience?

This.

I got a written letter from Tesla with „Vorkaufsrecht“ that stated that we can buy off the car at the end. Otherwise, what‘s stopping them keeping the car? Maybe the residual value is 10k but the real value is 20k.

@Cortana Thank you very much for your reply.
Yes, that makes sense. How long is it since you made the deal?

2 years ago.

With 0% leasing, you’re paying list price, whereas if you’d be buying with cash, you’d be getting the car for a few thousand CHF off. So if you factor in that discount, it’s not 0% anymore.

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You do not get any reseller discount from Tesla as you buy online from their store

Not totally true. For june they had two options. Contact a tesla store for the Cash option.

(Sorry for pasting german text)

Option 1: Cash

Tesla gibt 30.000 km Free Supercharging, einen Satz Winterreifen, Premium Connectivity sowie 3 Monate Enhanced Autopilot kostenlos dazu!

Option 2: Leasing

Tesla bietet mit seinen Partnerbanken einen Zinssatz von 0% bei 48 Monaten Laufzeit.

First time I see this… did you find it on the official website ? Might be worth something (especially the winter tyres and the 30’000 km supercharging - if no time limit to use it)