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Consumer Interest for EVs Grows in PA

by Danielle Smith, Keystone State News Connection

Aug 29, 2023

Car prices are dropping, both for gas-powered and electric vehicles. So, are more Pennsylvanians planning to buy EVs?

A report by iSeeCars found that by last June, prices for used electric vehicles had fallen by almost 30%, and new EV prices by 20%.

The Keystone State has seen an influx in EV purchases. In 2022, nearly 43,000 EVs were registered in the state, a nearly 82% increase from 2021.

Chris Harto, senior policy analyst at Consumer Reports, said EV sales are up 50% this year over last, even though gas prices have decreased.

“People are buying more vehicles, vehicle sales continue to grow, getting back closer to what the levels were before the pandemic,” he said, “but we haven’t yet seen a significant slowdown on gasoline vehicle sales or EV sales quite yet.”

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation recently awarded $34 million in federal grants for businesses to build fast-charging stations for EVs in 35 counties. It’s part of a Federal Highway Administration program to spur development of E-V infrastructure.

Harto said changes to federal tax credits have affected EV sales. Recent changes removed sales caps, but added requirements that the vehicle and its battery are manufactured in North America, resulting in popular domestic EVs gaining tax credit eligibility and other imported EVs losing eligibility.

“So you do see that in the sales data, that the EVS that are eligible for the tax credits do seem to be selling better than many EVs that don’t qualify yet for those tax credits,” he said. “But there is a bit of a way around that, in terms of leasing.”

Harto added that people who lease an EV regardless of the manufacturer can also take advantage of that tax credit. In Pennsylvania, residents may qualify for a rebate of up to $2,000 for an EV purchase, and a federal tax credit is also available.

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