ELECTRIC CAR SALES

Sales of electric cars are growing and in two years, two updated vehicles will be put on the market.  Advanced technology, new game changing models and federal incentives are creating a surge in the sales of electric vehicles.

According to an article in The Westchester County Business Journal by Chris Bosak on September 26, 2016, the national drive electric week was recently held.  Two new or advanced electric vehicles will be coming out within a year.  The Bolt by Chevrolet has been made more efficient.  It is priced at $30,000 and goes a whopping 238 miles on a single charge.  The Bolt is less expensive and has a higher range than the new Tesla.   According to Ingersoll of Danbury, Connecticut, the Bolt, Chevy’s first all-electric vehicle attempts to address two main concerns consumers have, price and driving range.  Presently, EV’s are priced higher than gasoline vehicles and most current EV’s travel only 80 – 120 miles on a charge. Nissan produces the all-electric Leaf, which is one of the most popular EV models.

In 2014, Connecticut joined seven other states and revealed plans to put a combined 3.3 million zero-emission vehicles on the road by 2025.  The other states are California, New York, Maryland, Massachusetts, Vermont, Rhode Island and Oregon.  In 2011, President Barach Obama declared a goal of putting 1 million EV’s on the road by 2015.  Unfortunately, that goal has not been met.  Only one-third of that goal has been reached.  According to The Electric Drive Transportation Association, as of last month, just under 500,000 plug-in vehicles has been sold in the U.S. including plug-in hybrids.  In Connecticut, there are 2700 plug in vehicles on the road as of June, 2016.

Sales of EV’s lag, despite the many state and federal incentives being offered.  Federal tax credits are up to $7,500 depending on the size of the car’s battery.  The states, through the CHEAPR program offer further rebates and incentives.  In Connecticut, you are eligible for a $3,000 rebate, a reduced registration fee and an emissions tests are not needed with EV’s.  CHEAPR is a program of DEEP, Eversource.  The Center for Sustainable Energy has issued $2 million for 780 vehicles since it began.  Ridgefield BMW is one of the top selling EV dealerships.  The BMW I3 will go 70 – 100 miles on a single charge.  The 2017 model will increase the range significantly.

Later this year, Toyota will start selling its first plug-in hybrid, Prius Prime.  Connecticut refused Tesla to sell directly to consumers.  This is hurting EV sales in Connecticut for Tesla.  The articles also points out low gas prices and oil prices have stunted sales of EV’s.  The article claims EV’s are a step toward the next big evolution for automobiles with hydrogen-powered fuel cell automobiles whose emissions is pure water which may be the direction the auto industry is headed.  Clean powered vehicles will become common place in the near future, the same way ABS brakes, traction control and air bags are now industry standards.