The governor of Washington state, Jay Inslee, recently signed a new law into effect that will see the state’s electric vehicle incentive program expanded to include plug-in hybrids (with at least 30 miles of all-electric range), according to recent reports.
The expansion will also see the maximum vehicle sale price allowed for incentive use increased from $35,000 to $42,500 — which will of course allow Tesla Model 3s and Chevy Bolts to qualify for the $3,100 state incentive.
It should be noted, though, that the changes don’t go into effect until July 1 — leaving a 10 week or so period when some potential buyers will probably simply sit around waiting for the transition before following through.
Gas2 provides more details:
JJ McCoy, legislative director for the Seattle Electric Vehicle Association, tells Inside EVs: “This bill will help get more Washington residents behind the wheel of a great EV. Several exciting mid-market cars with 200 miles of range will be in showrooms soon, and Washington’s incentive will give them a boost. Electric vehicles have a host of benefits — lower carbon emissions, lower fueling costs, better air quality — but they still cost more to make than an equivalent gas car.”
“As car makers scale up battery production and prices fall, EVs will soon be able to compete un-subsidized and provide a compelling value proposition. Fueling up costs just $0.85 a ‘gallon’ on Washington electricity rates, so once you have the car, you’re saving money with every mile. They’re also just a lot of fun to drive. We find that once people try an EV, they never they never want to go back to their gas car.”
The rebate program is scheduled to end on July 1, 2019, or one month after Washington sells 7,500 EVs that qualify for the exemption. McCoy says current estimates, based on the rate of electric car sales in his home state, are that there will be 7,500 qualified EVs on the road by the middle of 2018. If you are planning to buy an EV and live in the state of Washington, the time to act is now if you want to save an additional $3,100 on the purchase price of your car.
It should be clarified here that the $3,100 incentive is a rebate not a credit — meaning that it’s fully accessible even to those with a tax liability lower than $3,100.