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3. Tax Credits Still Available
The federal government allows up to $7,500 as a tax credit on an EV purchase. On top of that numerous states and local governments offer some form of incentive as well.
If you can take advantage of these, an EV like the Leaf could come down to low 20s, or even below $20,000 – although you would have to front the money for the purchase. The i-MiEV in California stands to net out at around $13,000 or less.
Some lease deals will apply the full federal tax credit into the price – check the fine print before assuming – and you may also still be eligible for state credits in a lease.
With a lease where they fold in the federal credit, the dealer does the paperwork, and lessees can recoup the full benefit early.
We’ve heard of some Leaf buyers deliberately leasing in California at a local dealer’s loss-leader rate – we’ve seen well below $200 per month – then applying for the state credit and buying out the car that way.
Shopping around may prove an EV hard to pass up, but this does vary by region, and your tax status may affect the quality of the bottom line as well. Traveling to get a car out of state, or shipping a car in has also been done if local deals are not so great.
If you do go to such extreme measures, you will want to be sure local service is available.