U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow will introduce legislation today proposing the nation switch its $7,500 federal rebate for buying an electric vehicle to the point of purchase, instead of asking owners to wait up to a year to get the money on their annual tax returns.
The Michigan Democrat also proposes a business-tax credit for buying medium- or heavy-duty plug-in hybrid trucks.
Stabenow thinks her tweak to the consumers EV credit, a plan Ward’s first reported last month, will spur sales and production and create thousands of jobs.
Quicker tax rebates for the cars also would help President Obama meet his goal of putting 1 million EVs on the road by 2015, an effort that has met skepticism because penetration of the cars today is restrained by high manufacturing costs auto makers must pass on to consumers.
The Chevy Volt extended-range electric vehicle, for example, qualifies for the consumer tax credit but starts at $41,000.
has said it does not expect to earn a profit on the vehicle in its first generation, but in recent weeks has been working out a plan to double production and turn it into a money-maker sooner.
The auto maker expresses support for Stabenow’s idea, saying in a statement it “integrates all of the components necessary for successful acceleration of electric vehicles in the market place.”
EV and hybrid suppliers Johnson Controls,and Arvin Meritor also have jumped behind the legislation.