To add to
@garsh's comments, I've always heard leasing works out better for businesses for tax purposes (expense that you have no asset to show for it)
IMO, there are a lot of people thinking the only way to have a car for just 3 years is to lease, and they don't seem to think you can sell a 3 year old car.
So based on the Model S at $68,000USD, a 36 month (15k mile/year) lease with $6532 down and a $837 monthly payment will cost $36,664
The same Model S on a 72 month 1.49% loan with $11,350 down for the same $837 monthly payment will cost $41,482 at the 36 month point. A difference of $4818. (Sales tax would be additional - so for simplicity assuming we are all in Oregon or other tax free states
) So for an extra $4818 up front, you keep the car. depreciation value* on a 3 year old car is 89%, so you still have an asset worth $60,520, that you owe $30,132 on, so have $30,388 of equity (plus having cashed in on the tax credit(s) )
Or in other words, you could return a leased car at 36 months and have paid $36,664 or you could sell a loaned car 36 months into it and it would cost you $11,094 (assuming you are still paying the 1.49% on the early payment).
So the leased car averaged to $1018/month to use and the purchased then sold at 36 months averaged $308 to use/month.
If you turn this the other way and base it on the 72 month loan timeline, the purchased car by loan would cost $71,614 and would own a depreciated 6 year old car. depreciation value* 65% for the value on a 6 year old car. So you have an asset worth $44200, or have paid $27,414 for using the car for the 6 years.
Assuming you have two back to back 36month leases on cars $68,000 you would be $73,328 for the 72 months, or $1714 more than the payments on a loan and $45,914 over the cost of driving a car on loan over the same 6 years.
I don't see any way a lease sounds like it makes sense to 'save' money.
*used this depreciation value chart WA uses for calculating excise tax
ETA - I was doing my math while
@Badback posted - so what he said