Drive an Electric Vehicle

Why drive an EV? EVs reduce your emissions, are fun to drive, and are less expensive to operate and maintain. There are a lot of great choices on the market right now. Check out this great Spring 2020 Guide to EV Shopping (and check back later for updates). Try PlugStar and read testimonials and stories from local EV drivers under the Testimonials tab! 

How much does an EV cost? About the same as a gas car once tax incentives and rebates are factored in.  Also, anyone interested in an EV should check out the DriveGreen program.  This program, offered by the Green Energy Consumers Alliance, arranges with local car dealerships to provide very substantial discounts for purchase or lease of many brands and models of EVs. These deals change every month, so be sure to check often. On top of that discount, the State of Massachusetts offers rebates from $1,500-$2,500. There are also Federal tax credits. There is more info under the Deep Dive tab.

Want to lease? DriveGreen arranges with local car dealerships to provide very substantial discounts for leases as well. These deals change every month, so be sure to check often. If you lease a car, the leasing company gets the federal tax credit, which is why several dealers are offering attractive leasing options.

Make it even better by using renewable sources for your home electric source. If the electricity that runs the car is generated by renewables, then you have taken an even bigger step to limit emissions.

Steps to Take

  1. Try the PlugStar “Browse Electric Cars” tool to match your needs to your best  Electric Car option. 
  2. Ready for some estimates? FIRST go to the Green Energy Consumer Alliance Drive Green website . Green Energy has arranged with local car dealerships to provide large discounts for purchase or lease of many brands and models of EV’s. These deals change every month! Also, don't assume the dealers will offer you these deals. You need to bring them along. (Handy benefit: you can skip the sales pitch by showing the unbeatable DriveGreen deal.)
  3. Test drive your favorite models at the dealers and make your selection.
  4. Purchase or finance the car just like any other vehicle
  5. Don’t forget to claim any applicable tax deductions and credits when you file!
  6. Let us know how it went by leaving a Testimonial under the tab above.

Also, check if there are any Electric Vehicle "Test Drive Fests" in your neighborhood. EV drivers love their cars and arrange these Fests all the time, and you get to check out all kinds of models, with an owner (not a salesperson). Found one? Let us know so we can promote it here. Can't find one?  Request that we organize one.  If you’d like to talk with a neighbor who drives an EV, reach out to and we will connect you with someone.

Emissions: In Massachusetts, transportation accounts for a whopping 43% of our greenhouse gas emissions. Electric vehicles, in combination with renewable, carbon-free electricity generation, can dramatically reduce your greenhouse gas emissions because they have lower lifecycle emissions than gas-powered cars, even after accounting for extra emissions from battery manufacturing. (Buy 100% renewable electricity from Milton's Community Electricity Aggregation program)

With a renewably-powered EV, the only source of emissions comes from the manufacturing process. If the electricity comes from fossil fuels, driving an EV is obviously not entirely pollution free. Still, according to the Union of Concerned Scientists, EVs and plug-ins have a much smaller carbon footprint than conventional cars no matter what the source of the electricity, and the electric grid is reducing its emissions faster than any other sector.

There are a lot of great choices on the market right now, from all-electric to hybrids with plug-in options. They're fun to drive with their great pickup and power. And they’re cheaper to run. According to the Department of Energy, electric vehicles can save as much as $1,200 per year in fuel costs. EVs have fewer moving parts and are therefore much cheaper to maintain: they do not need oil changes, and have no transmission fluids, fuel pumps, timing belts, etc.

Range anxiety? Fully electric vehicles (EV) are constrained by their battery capacity, but the available battery ranges improve every year. For example, the new highly-rated Chevrolet Bolt has a range of 259 miles. The Tesla Model 3 has a range of 250-322 miles  depending on the option you choose.  Either of these could drive from Milton to New York City with charge to spare.  The network of charging stations keeps expanding, with many apps that help you locate public charging stations and if they are available in real time. There are, for instance, 1,870 Tesla Supercharger Stations in North America (these can't be used by other makes, though). Most chargers are located conveniently at restaurants or roadside rest stops. Milton has two public charging stations behind the Town Hall and at Milton Landing.  Enter “charging stations Milton MA” into Google Maps and you’ll see all the different charging stations in the area.

You can plug your car into any standard 110-120V outlet, but if you want to charge for your commute overnight you will likely need to install a Level II 240 Volt charger.  These make charging time up to 6X faster. Equipment plus installation of these chargers cost in the range of $1,000 to $1,200. This cost is tax deductible. And we can recommend an electrician to install one for you.

Rebates. Qualifying battery electric vehicles and fuel cell electric vehicles are eligible for a $2,500 rebate. Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles with an all-electric range of 25 miles or greater are eligible for a $1,500 rebate. Some electric vehicles qualify for federal income tax credits and state rebates. The amounts depend on the battery size of the vehicle, the model, and, of course, your tax liability (check here , and the dealer will advise you as well). Tax credits and rebates are available to car purchasers only.

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