The comparatively high purchase price of electric vehicles is still one of the main pain points of getting into one, but if you live in Washington State you’re in for some very good news.

Starting this August, the Washington State Department of Commerce will offer up to $9,000 in instant rebates toward the lease of a new EV. Other incentives will also be available for used battery-powered cars and new EV purchases.

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Tax incentives are crucial for EV adoption

As new technology, they can cost more than gas-powered cars, but state and federal rebates go a long way toward pushing their adoption—and hopefully cleaning up the air. The U.S. federal tax credit was revised for 2023, but many states also offer their own incentives. Check if your state does if you're in the market for a vehicle.

According to state officials, the $9,000 incentive can be applied as a point-of-sale rebate for new EV leases of three years or more. A $5,000 rebate is available for new EV purchases and two-year leases.

People looking for a used EV can also benefit from a $2,500 state incentive when buying or leasing on at least a two-year term.

These rebates can be combined with the federal $7,500 tax credit as well as Washington State’s sales tax exemption for zero-emissions vehicles, making for some pretty sweet deals.

Here’s the state’s Department of Commerce to explain how it all works:

A dealer is advertising a three-year lease at $239 per month with $1,999 due at signing – for a total lease cost of $10,364 ($1,999 + $239 x 35 months). For the qualifying customer, a $9,000 state EV Instant Rebate brings the lease cost down to $1,364. The dealer applies a $500 lease fee and a $200 documentation fee, and collects state and local transit, title and registration fees of $734, making the final lease total $2,798, or $78 per month over the 36-month agreement.

The same department put up some estimated three-year lease examples using the $9,000 rebate as a down payment for different cars on the market today; the federal tax credit is also included. They include:

  • Toyota bZ4X – $56
  • Hyundai Kona – $78
  • Nissan Leaf – $87
  • Hyundai Ioniq 6 – $93
  • Subaru Solterra – $123
  • Kia Niro Wind – $135

In the case of the Tesla Model 3, a three-year lease with all of Washington State’s incentives and the federal tax credit taken into account, the monthly fee is $127. For the Model Y crossover, that figure goes up to $207.

 

That said, there are some eligibility requirements to benefit from the up-to-$9,000 rebates: the annual income for a family of four needs to be below $93,600 and the car’s MSRP has to be lower than $90,000. In the case of single-person households, the annual income needs to be below $45,180. In other words, the program is aimed at low- and middle-income families and individuals. That's good news, especially when some of those communities can have the poorest air quality. 

“Washington State is already a leader in EV adoption, but many more people interested in ditching the gas pump may think they can’t afford to do it,” Gov. Jay Inslee said. “With these new rebates, we’re significantly lowering the entry point, opening the door to EVs for people of modest incomes as we continue paving the way to a clean transportation future for all.”

The $45 million EV Instant Rebates Program has funding through June 2025 or until all the money is used and can provide between 6,500 and 8,000 rebates.

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