California’s Clean Vehicle Rebate Project a Boost to the EV Industry

Electric Vehicle (EV) users in California have a reason to be happy with recent developments, aside for the obvious reason of being able to help clean up the environment. A recent tax incentive of the State could give them substantial rebates.

EV buyers could be eligible for federal income tax credit of up to $7,500 if they purchase their vehicle on or after 2010. However, the credit amount will vary depending on the electrical capacity of the battery used to power the vehicle. The Center for Sustainable Energy will administer the implementation of the rebates and according to them, the Air Resources Board has already committed to additional funding until 2015.

Plug In America, meanwhile, in a statement lauded the new California state rebate program. Jay Friedland, Legislative Director of Plug In America said that, “Large or small, flashy or practical, plug-in vehicles reduce our dependence on petroleum and cut greenhouse gas emissions. The state is making a wise investment in our future.” The nonprofit group has been urging the state government for the past year to make the program maximize its benefit to consumers. “Our mission has always been to help consumers adopt to clean plug-in vehicles, and a hefty rebate is the best possible way to get these cars out of the showroom and onto the road,” he added. “We applaud the California Air Resources Board for the leadership it is demonstrating with this program.” Friedland said. According to the organization rebates can be availed under the Air Resources Board’s Clean Vehicle Rebate Project by eligible vehicles purchased or leased after March 15 this year. The following rebates are available based on a report gathered from a Plug In America: · $5,000 for passenger EVs; · $3,000 for plug-in electric hybrids; · $1,500 for electric motorcycles; · up to $1,500 for Neighborhood Electric Vehicles; · and up to $20,000 for commercial EVs such as delivery trucks.

The non-profit organization stated that the new rebate, coupled with a $7,500 federal stimulus tax credit, could cut the cost of a new Nissan Leaf by $12,500, bringing down the sticker price to $20,000 or less in California. This can only be realized if media reports of the car’s expected selling price prove accurate, the group clarified. Meanwhile, aside from The Nissan Leaf, the other short listed vehicles covered under the program include plug-ins from Smith Electric, EVI, Tesla Motors, GEM, Miles Electric Vehicles and Zero Motorcycles. The list is expected to increase as other automakers unveil their own Electric Vehicle models. The organization has claimed that through its efforts, they have helped double the funding for the program by actively organizing, together with the state agency, various public testimonies and workshop presentations designed to shape the State of California policy on Electric Vehicles. The organization’s Plug In Vehicle Tracker provided valuable guidance on vehicle selection. Its members urged air regulators to offer generous rebates on all classes of vehicles and urged against giving incentives to demonstration-only programs and short-term leases. “We wanted to make sure that these incentives would get cars on the road and keep them on the road,” said Plug In America president Dan Davids.