Better scoop up that Bolt EV if you think you qualify for the full $7,500.
Andrew KrokReviews Editor / Cars
Cars are Andrew's jam, as is strawberry. After spending years as a regular ol' car fanatic, he started working his way through the echelons of the automotive industry, starting out as social-media director of a small European-focused garage outside of Chicago. From there, he moved to the editorial side, penning several written features in Total 911 Magazine before becoming a full-time auto writer, first for a local Chicago outlet and then for CNET Cars.
General Motors should reach 200,000 electrified vehicle sales this year, triggering a phase-out of its federal tax credit, The Detroit News reports. It has sold approximately 187,000 plug-in
and EVs to date, split between the
Chevrolet Bolt EV
electric hatch and
extended-range electric, as well as the Cadillac CT6 plug-in hybrid. GM believes it will hit the cap this year, but The Detroit News talked to Edmunds, which believes it won't trigger the phase-out until the first quarter of 2019.
When an automaker hits that 200,000-car mark, buyers will see their potential tax credit halved every six months for a year, when it will disappear entirely. It's worth noting that this isn't a point-of-sale price reduction, but rather a one-for-one reduction of your tax liability for the year. If you didn't pay $7,500 in federal taxes, you won't be getting that full amount, even if you snag up an EV before the phase-out begins.
As The Detroit News notes, it's taken quite some time for this 2009 tax credit to get to the point of phasing out. It was implemented to help spur EV and plug-in adoption rates, but the technology for long-range electric vehicles didn't really reach the mass market until now -- the 238-mile Bolt EV starts at about $38,000 before any credits, which is only a couple grand above the average new-car transaction price. Other EVs, like the
, have been available for longer, but with sub-200-mile ranges and still-limited infrastructure, many buyers are still wary about going electric.
A number of automakers, including Infiniti and Volvo, have committed to offering electrified variants of entire lineups starting in the next few years, so it shouldn't be too long before other automakers start approaching the tax-credit cap, as well.
Chevy Bolt brings big EV convenience in a small package