Two Utilities In Hawaii Are Now Offering $10,000 Rebates On Nissan LEAF

8 months ago by Steven Loveday 32

Kauaʻi Island Utility Cooperative and Hawaiian Electric Co. are offering rebates on the purchase of a new Nissan LEAF

In support of the state’s Drive Electric Hawaii program, two utility companies have partnered up to offer rebates of up to $10,000 in addition to federal incentives, for those that purchase a new Nissan LEAF.

With this deal, a new Nissan LEAF could come in around $12,000!

With this deal, a new Nissan LEAF could come in around $13,500!

Kauaʻi Island Utility Cooperative (KIUC) and Hawaiian Electric Co. are running the new deal through March 2017.

Kansas City Power & Light ran much the same deal last year and customers were purchasing new Nissan LEAFs for less than $12,000, after all rebates and incentives. With the help of the program, Missouri expanded its EV drivers from 50 to over 1,200 in 2015 alone.

According to KIUC, customers can get a LEAF starting at $13,500. The total rebates in Hawaii, through this program, will amount to $17,500, which comes of the LEAF’s starting price of $31,000. On top of this, the utility is making sure to remind potential buyers that the car is gasoline and oil free, and requires almost zero maintenance.

Hawaii has set a goal of becoming a state that functions on 100 percent renewable energy. Hawaiian Electric spokeswoman, Shelee Kimura shared:

Drive Electric Hawaii helps residents “save money, reduce tailgate emissions and help break our state’s dependence on fossil fuels.”

The Hawaiian islands are generally small, and already rely heavily on solar energy. Some EV owners look to their electric cars as a second vehicle for city commuting. At this price, Drive Electric Hawaii hopes that that concept begins to catch on.

Source: UtilityDIVE

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32 responses to "Two Utilities In Hawaii Are Now Offering $10,000 Rebates On Nissan LEAF"

  1. (⌐■_■) Trollnonymous says:

    We’ll that would officially make the LEAF the first affordable EV!

  2. DJ says:

    I don’t understand why they restricted it to just the Leaf. I get that maybe they don’t offer it for a PHEV or even just for BEVs over XXX AER but to restrict it to just one car I think is messed up.

    1. DJ says:

      Although I should add that I think how they treat solar PV over generation is even more messed up!

      1. Brandon says:

        All islands want to end generation, which I assume you mean diesel or other fossil fuels. All islands going wind ànd solar ànd storage battery and pumped hydro if they can. Google search to find examples.

    2. Yogurt says:

      Teslas and Leafs are probably the only BEVs sold in Hawaii and I dont feel sorry for people who can afford 80k for a car not getting a rebate…

      1. alohart says:

        Nope. We bought our first EV, a Mitsubishi i-MiEV, in Honolulu in 2012. We bought our second EV, a BMW i3 BEV, in Honolulu in 2014. A new i-MiEV is probably special-order only now, but new i3’s are available at BMW dealers. Ford Focus EV’s are sold in Honolulu. None of the pure compliance EV’s is sold in Honolulu AFAIK.

    3. Someone out there says:

      Most likely Nissan is behind it in the background. They want to dump their remaining stock of LEAFs before the next generation arrives. Also, on smaller islands like Hawaii range isn’t as much of an issue, there’s barely enough roads to run out of range so 100 miles is plenty.

  3. speculawyer says:

    Why would Hawaiian utilities do that? Do they have lots of excess wind energy at night?

    Hawaii is a great place for EVs since you don’t need long range and there are lots potential renewable energy from wind & sun. But on the other hand, their main source of electricity is still presumably burning diesel in a conventional power plant.

    They really need some sort of demand-response or V2G program to really take advantage of EVs being added to their islands.

    1. Doggydogworld says:

      Hawaii has an excess of solar. Especially Kauai. They’d like to put in a lot more solar because it’s much cheaper than diesel. A ton of EVs plugged in at mid-day could help them grow solar to >50%.

      Kauai also has some battery installations, recently with Tesla, and is planning a pumped hydro plant. But EVs could get them there faster and cheaper. With V2H and the storage already in place and in planning they they could get solar to 80%. And reduce electricity prices 30-50% in the process.

      EVs are also great for residents, since Kauai gas prices are high. KIUC is a cooperative, so they care about stuff like that.

      1. DJ says:

        Ya, this is great news for them 🙂 Didn’t realize they had progressed on the pumped hydro.

        http://www.hydroworld.com/articles/2014/11/kiuc-gets-go-ahead-for-25-mw-hawaiian-pumped-storage-proposal.html

  4. Dave Erb says:

    Nissan offers North Carolina residents a similar $10,000 rebate through Plug-In NC. For details, see
    http://www.pluginnc.com/resource/nissan-10000-rebate-north-carolina-residents/

    Any North Carolina resident is eligible. Just print out the rebate announcement from the website, and take it with you to the dealer. A friend of mine used the rebate on a 30 kWh Leaf at a South Carolina dealership.

    1. Robert Utess says:

      Talk about bad timing I moved out of NC in Oct of 2016 🙁

  5. Todd says:

    Wow! Combined with the $4000 discount from Nissan Finance and Edmunds reported market value for HI, this takes the price to under $9000. I would be jumping at the opportunity.

  6. codyozz says:

    I’m under the impression that Nissan is footing the bill for this and just partnering with utility companies for the promotion. Otherwise how would they run similar programs across the country? I live in Hawaii and I can tell you that our utility company is trying to promote green energy but it’s mostly on a necessity. In the last year they’ve added DCFC units across my island, and donated 16 smart electric drives to various nonprofit agencies across the state.

  7. GrokGrok says:

    On the other hand, Hawaii relies heavily on oil for electricity generation (67% in 2014), one reason why electricity rates are high, especially if oil prices are high. Average kWh rates were $0.35 in Oahu in 2014, and $0.44 in Kauai; they’ve dropped a bit since. Want to escape these prices and go green by putting solar panels on your roof? A waiting list was imposed in 2015 after the electric company got concerned about the effect on the grid of intermittent residential generation in the sun-drenched state. If you live in a multifamily structure (as a higher percentage of Hawaiians do), where are you going to charge your vehicle? Gasoline also tends to be a bit more expensive, but miles driven per year average lower in the islands (7000 in 2014). Once you parse all that out, a heavily-subsidized Leaf may make sense for you in Hawaii, but it’s less straightforward than if (say) Ohio offered the same deal.

    1. alohart says:

      Hawaii law requires condo associations and apartment owners to allow EV owners to install their own EVSE’s at the owner’s expense which is what we did. So living in an apartment doesn’t necessarily prevent one from charging an EV in one’s apartment parking space.

      1. GrokGrok says:

        Thanks! Interesting. I wish that were the case everywhere — and that the building code everywhere require new construction (single and multifamily) to rough in the ability to easily add EV charging equipment, which would cost very little at that point. It’s one thing to plug in your charger to an existing 240V plug in the garage, and another thing to run a new outlet from a panel on the other side of the building.

  8. James says:

    I can’t think of anyplace where solar charging and such deals make more sense. Take the savings you recieved in buying the car and pour that into solar panels for your roof.

    Hawaiians should detest those ugly, smelly powerplants that belch smoke and sully their paradise. Add insult to injury by pricing gasoline through the roof due to shipping and regulatory hassles.

    Going solar just makes all the sense in the world. Tesla Powerpack2s should be installed all over the place. If I win the lotto, I’m heading there right away with a Powerwall or two in my garage.

    P.S. – I love swaying palm trees and swimming with sea turtles and dolphins.

  9. James says:

    Surely Bolt EV will be added to the LEAF once they’re available in all 50.

  10. Mister G says:

    When is Hawaii going to use lava heat to generate electricity?

    1. DJ says:

      You don’t mess with Pele…

    2. alohart says:

      There is a relatively small geothermal electric generation facility on Hawaii Island, but as DJ stated, native Hawaiians are opposed to doing anything that might anger Pele.

      1. Nemo says:

        Seriously? But why wouldn’t Pele want her people to take advantage of her generous gift of heat?

    3. codyozz says:

      The geothermal plant down the road from my here on Hawaii Island produces about 35% of our islands energy, but it’s the California hippy wacko transplants, more than locals that are opposed to expansion. And yes, since HELCO doesn’t own the plant, they too are opposed. Our current mayor aligns that way as well. He thinks that they safety measures aren’t sufficient to allow for further expansion.
      I.e.: tons of people are against it, for insufficient/ poor reasons.

  11. Robert Utess says:

    Come on Florida take the hint.

  12. energymatters says:

    This makes great sense. The utilities have been losing load due to solar pv installs and this will bring load BACK to the grid AND allow more solar PV installs to support the EVs at the same time as reducing gasoline imports to Hawaii.

  13. Someone out there says:

    Lesser known as the “let’s clean out our stock before the new LEAF arrives” program.

    1. Kenz says:

      True. Because if it were the utility alone, they’d take that $10k/car, buy up and ship all the used leafs in California, and still be able to pay people $1,000 to take it.

  14. Nemo says:

    I got the same offer here in Maryland the other day. Through Constellation — I have them as an alternative supplier, supposedly wind-only. $10000 off, before federal and state tax incentives, which would be another $10.5K if I could claim them all. Offer expires March 31st.

    I really don’t need a new car right now (and I already drive electric), but this is tempting.

    1. Nemo says:

      P.S. The email I got says “We’ve collaborated with Nissan to [etc.]”, so that makes explicit what was only speculated on, above.

      1. BenG says:

        Very cool to hear that this deal is in more markets.

        If you can use the full federal tax credit, this makes a new Leaf only $12,500. One of the cheapest cars you can buy, and then with very low operating expenses.

        The era of the affordable EV has finally arrived.

  15. Sonja says:

    That was only for “current inventory”. They gave the rebate for a grand total of 9 (nine) Leafs on Kauai, the main dealerships on Oahu are sold out as well. The deal was actually over before this article came out.