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Advocates hope Ottawa expands, renews electric car rebate program

OTTAWA — Electric car advocates are pushing Ottawa to put more money into its zero-emission vehicle rebate program and expand it to include used cars in the next federal budget.

Transport Canada officials say 75 per cent of the $300-million program has already been spoken for, just 15 months into its three-year mandate.

The rebate now provides up to $5,000 off the purchase or lease of many new fully electric or hybrid-electric vehicles in a bid to help even out of the price difference between them and traditional, gas-powered models.

Electric Mobility Canada wants Ottawa to expand the program to include used cars and to increase the maximum purchase price of the cars that qualify for a rebate as more expensive SUVs and pick-up trucks are set to start coming onto the market.

Cara Clairman, CEO of the non-profit advocacy group Plug’n Drive, says she hopes Ottawa will provide more money for rebates when the current allotment runs out because they are making a difference.

Electric vehicle sales now amount to about four per cent of all passenger vehicles sold, up from about two per cent in 2018.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 20, 2020.

The Canadian Press


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