For car shoppers living in the state of Washington who are looking for discounts on plug-in electrified vehicles, it might be a good idea to wait until July.
On July 1, 2016, state bill HB2778 will go into effect, offering electric vehicle owners up to an additional $3,100 in instant rebates for new vehicles with MSRPs starting between $35,000 and $42,500. These will need to be all-electric vehicles or plug-in hybrid electric vehicles that can travel at least 30 mile on battery power.
The state incentive is available only on purchased EVs, and not leased models. There’s also federal tax incentives available up to $7,500 on purchased vehicles.
J.J. McCoy, legislative director of the Seattle Electric Vehicle Association, said that some of the qualifying vehicles will include the upcoming Chevrolet Bolt, Tesla Model 3, and the currently available BMW i3 that starts with an MSRP of $42,400. McCoy says that while incentives are necessary for now, that won’t last forever. “As car makers scale up battery production and prices fall, EVs will soon be able to compete unsubsidized and provide a compelling value proposition,” McCoy said.
Washington is well known for offering EV incentives, and for putting a cap on what’s available to state residents. The new bill raises the starting price from a previous state cap of $35,000, which can now go up to $42,500 under the new regulation. Washington had been following the trend seen in other states like California where critics complained that EVs like the Tesla Model S were only available to wealthy consumers.