Maui Business

Deadline for Electric Vehicle Rebates Extended

July 25, 2011, 2:32 PM HST
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Photo Credit : sunwaytuner.comBy Sonia Isotov

Hawaii residents can save up to $13,500 by applying for rebates on new electric or hybrid electric/gasoline cars and chargers, and now the state has extended the application deadline to January 31, 2012.

From early January to mid-July, the State’s Energy Office is reporting that 128 rebates have been approved for 68 electric vehicles and 60 chargers, with $1,068,988 remaining in funding.

The state anticipates an increase in consumer demand for new electric vehicles for the last quarter of this year and extended its original deadline for tax rebates from September 2011 for another four months.

“We want to empower more Hawaii residents with the opportunity to contribute to Hawaii’s goal of becoming more energy efficient and increase our energy security,” said Estrella Seese, acting energy program administrator for the Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism’s Energy Office. “Our top economic priority as a state is energy independence.  The extension of the rebates for electric vehicles and chargers is good news for consumers who wish to purchase them.”

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Hawai‘i residents can apply for state rebates of up to $4,500 on purchases of electric vehicles and up to $500 for electric vehicle chargers through the Hawai’i Electric Vehicle (EV) Ready Program.  In addition to the State EV rebates, federal tax incentives of up to $7,500 are also available for highway-capable vehicles (the Qualified Plug-in Electric Drive Motor Vehicle credit, which applies to at least 200,000 units per auto manufacturer before it phases out) and up to $1,000 for individual buyers and $30,000 for businesses installing EV charger stations. This allows for the potential of up to $13,500 in rebates and tax credits for an individual.

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Hawaii is among the states designated for early release of the first EVs produced by manufacturers such as the Nissan Leaf, Wheego Life, GM Volt, and Mitsubishi i (MiEV). Many manufacturers are continuing to choose Hawaii as an ideal location, for many reasons including;

  • Consumers’ high level of enthusiasm to adopt electric transportation. Hawai‘i has the largest number of reservations per capita in the country for the Nissan Leaf.
  • Favorable electricity time-of-use EV charging rates from electric utility companies.
  • Moderate climate, limited driving distances, and strong tourism industry are ideal for EV utilization.
  • DBEDT’s Hawai’i Electric Vehicle EV Ready Program has provided $2.6 million in grants for the systematic installation of electric vehicle chargers across the state; public education and outreach including an EV Ready Guidebook; introduction of EVs to rental car and County fleets, car-sharing services within the hospitality industry; and an online permitting system for charger installations at single-family residences on Oahu. 

The rebates are available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Rebate forms are available on DBEDT’s Energy office website at http://electricvehicle.hawaii.gov.

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