The Chevrolet Bolt EV has had quite the glow-up since its U.S. market launch in late 2016. Now, even after its production run has ended, it's somehow even more of a screaming electric deal than ever. Think EVs aren't affordable? The Bolt EV just threw that argument out the window in 2024.
Today, the 2023 Bolt EV starts at $27,495, an entire $10,000 less than it was seven years ago. While the Bolt EV still qualifies for the $7,500 tax credit, the IRS now allows the tax credit to be deducted from the vehicle's purchase price. Considering a new entry-level Bolt 1LT, the total out-the-door price could be as low as $19,995, even factoring in destination fees. That said, many dealerships implement additional fees, so the price might fluctuate depending on the sale location.
When looking at similar internal combustion engine vehicles, the value proposition of the Bolt EV is hard to beat. The 122-horsepower Nissan Versa S CVT costs $19,075, the Kia Soul starts at $21,315, and the Toyota Corolla hatch runs for $24,450. But that only tells part of the story. The (potential) $19,995 Bolt LT comes with remote start, LED headlights, and wireless Apple CarPlay. None of those mentioned features come as standard on the Nissan Versa.
This is a huge deal for several reasons. One argument against the traditional EV tax credit was that it did not help all car buyers; if someone's income did not generate enough of a tax liability, that person would not be able to reap the full benefits of the tax credit (in other words, it was not refundable.) The same was true for contractors or people who own their own business. If someone already has a large number of write-offs, the EV tax credit could be a wash, as his or her tax burden will have already been mostly eliminated.
Gallery: 2022 Chevrolet Bolt EV: Review
Now, anyone can obtain the point-of-sale tax credit at any dealership registered with the IRS to offer the credits, meaning the car gets a discount right when you buy it. This also means there will be sales tax savings on the cars as the purchase price has been reduced by $7,500. For California car buyers paying 7.25 percent tax, the credit yields an additional $543.75 in savings.
Even if the buyer has a tax burden of less than $7,500, he or she won't be required to repay the IRS, unless his or her income falls above the respective thresholds. The income limits are $300,000 for joint filers, $225,000 for head-of-household, and $150,000 for single filers.
While these rules and restrictions are just being enacted now, it's important to call your local dealerships before purchasing the vehicle. Not every dealership has agreed to distribute the tax credits, but it has been recently reported that over 7,000 dealerships have taken the steps to register with the IRS.
For many buyers, the Bolt EV with the point-of-sale tax credit is a compelling option. Not only is the Bolt the cheapest electric car on the market, but it can now rival some of the most affordable internal combustion engine cars. But the Bolt EV's production run ended in December, so like some old late-night infomercial, get them "while supplies last."