Taking the lead of the U.S., European governments have started to institute incentive plans for individuals purchasing electric vehicles. The programs instituted in their individual countries are designed to assist the purchaser in managing the high cost of the electric vehicle purchase as well as spur sales for this new vehicle designed to assist the environment in the long run.
There are differing levels though of electric vehicle consciousness in European countries. The United Kingdom, Norway and Portugal are already in the process of putting up electric vehicle infrastructures to serve the burgeoning electric car population through driving privileges and well-placed electric chargers on main thoroughfares. Other countries impose taxes on carbon dioxide emissions on internal combustion engine cars and tax incentives for plug-in vehicles.
The American way is to provide a federal tax credit of $7,500, the amount determined by battery size. In Europe though, the amount of the perk receivable is dependent upon the amount of carbon emissions produced by the car. Thus, electric cars have zero emissions making it the most eligible for the largest incentives. The following are the other incentives provided by the individual countries in Europe:
Austria. Aside from the provided tax breaks for the purchase of the electric vehicle, the owners are also exempt from a fuel consumption tax and provides bonuses to low or no carbon dioxide emissions, which can amount to as much as $1,120 per month.
France. There is a credit of $7,000 for new electric vehicle purchasers while internal combustion engine car owners are required to pay $3,650 under this program.
Germany. This great automaking country is lagging behind but with new programs being instituted allowing for a five year period giving tax exemptions to electric vehicles in the annual motor vehicle tax. In ten years, the tax would be doubled.
Britain. Under current levels, the rebates an electric vehicle owner can reach up to $8,000 in a stepladder schedule until 2016. Daily, electric cars are exempt from the $13 daily congestion charge and free parking for limited times. For the year, the electric car is exempt from the vehicle excise tax imposed on carbon emissions amounting to $1,500.
Luxemborg. For purchasers, there is an electric car purchase rebate amounting to $4,200 but the recharging, to avail of the full amount, must be from renewable energy sourced charging stations.
Norway. There are no monetary privileges for electric car owners but they can avail of free parking as well as free charging in electric vehicle parking lots. Electric cars can also use taxi and bus lanes and go through tolls and park for free. These progressive owners can also avail of tax and import duty exemptions as well as congestion charges and fees.
Portugal. There is an estimated public network of 1,350 charging stations throughout the country. The electric car owner can also receive a rebate of up to $7,000 as well as an added $2,100 if the previously owned internal combustion engine car is scrapped. There is also a tax exemption amounting to $1,114.
Spain. The federal government provides a rebate of up to 25% of the sticker price of the electric car. Local authorities can provide up to $8,400 in rebate for the purchase.