Canada Proposes $5,000 Nationwide Electric Car Incentive

by Denis Gurskiy

As part of a new budget plan, the Canadian government has proposed its first ever nationwide electric car incentive.

For some time now, each province within Canada has had their own electric car incentives, much like how states like California give incentives themselves. However, Canada does not have any electric car incentives at the federal level like the United States.

However, with their new Budget 2019, that Canadian government is looking to bring an electric car incentive to a nationwide basis. The proposal is written as follows:

To encourage more Canadians to buy zero-emission vehicles, Budget 2019 proposes to provide $300 million over three years, starting in 2019–20, to Transport Canada to introduce a new federal purchase incentive of up to $5,000 for electric battery or hydrogen fuel cell vehicles with a manufacturer’s suggested retail price of less than $45,000. Program details to follow.

With the incentive only kicking in for electric cars below $45,000, it will cover cars such as the Chevy Bolt EV and Nissan Leaf. However those wishing to use it on a Model 3 are out of luck as the Standard-Range Model 3 starts at $47,600 in Canada.

Along with the electric car incentive, there were a few other proposals made alongside it to help push electric car adoption.

  • To expand the network of zero-emission vehicle charging and refuelling stations, Budget 2019 proposes to build on previous investments by providing Natural Resources Canada with $130 million over five years, starting in 2019–20, to deploy new recharging and refuelling stations in workplaces, public parking spots, commercial and multi-unit residential buildings, and remote locations.
  • Meeting the ambitious sales targets requires automakers to make sufficient models and numbers of zero-emission vehicles available for sale to meet Canadian needs. Budget 2019 proposes to provide $5 million over five years, starting in 2019–20 to Transport Canada to work with auto manufacturers to secure voluntary zero-emission vehicle sales targets to ensure that vehicle supply meets increased demand.
  • To attract and support new high-quality, job-creating investments in zero-emission vehicle manufacturing in Canada, automotive manufacturers and parts suppliers can access funding through the Strategic Innovation Fund, which was recently provided $800 million in additional funding through the 2018 Fall Economic Statement.

Overall it is nice to see some policies towards electric car adoption being made at the federal level. The price cutoff might be a controversial decision for some though. While I understand that no one wants to give incentives towards well-off people who can buy cars that cost more than $45,000, it is not the most aggressive approach towards EV adoption. Obviously the most aggressive approach would be lifting the price cutoff and instilling some sort of tax on gasoline cars, but for the time being that is unrealistic.

Regardless, it is better than nothing and we’re happy that the Canadian government is stepping up towards helping adoption.

What do you guys think of the proposal? Let us know down in the comments below.

Source: Government of Canada

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