Canada’s Electric Vehicle Rebate Program: Up to $5,000 in Incentives for 27 Cars (Excludes Tesla)

Canada zero emission vehicles

When the Liberal government unveiled their 2019 budget last month, it was full of new spending programs, including a new three-year, $300 million program towards electric vehicle incentives.

Today, Transport Canada has provided more details regarding the program and has also listed 27 makes and models of eligible electric vehicles.

The government explains, “the purchase incentive for zero-emission vehicles will apply to eligible new vehicles that are purchased or leased on or after May 1, 2019.” This program is still subject to Parliamentary approval, says Transport Canada.

Marc Garneau, Minister of Transport, said in a statement, “The time to act on climate is now. The Government of Canada is working to accelerate the adoption of zero-emission vehicles to help make it easier for Canadians to be part of the solution to climate change and to reduce their daily driving costs. With these investments, Canada is joining a coalition of international partners working towards a future of zero-emission transportation.”

Here are the base price ranges of eligible vehicles for this rebate:

  • Less than $45,000: passenger vehicles with 6 or fewer seats; higher-priced trims are eligible up to $55,000 MSRP.
  • Less than $55,000: passenger vehicles with 7 or more seats; higher-priced trims are eligible up to $60,000 MSRP.

Of course, with these prices, all Tesla models are ineligible, since the base 5-seater Model 3 is priced starting at $53,700 in Canada. The next trim up for a Model 3 starts at $67,200, so it’s still ineligible.

The government says Canadians who purchase or lease an eligible battery electric, hydrogen fuel cell, plug-in hybrid will receive the following incentives:

  • Battery-electric, hydrogen fuel cell, and longer range (50km or more on a single charge) plug-in hybrid vehicles are eligible for an incentive of $5,000
  • Shorter range (those with batteries below 15 kWh) plug-in hybrid electric vehicles are eligible for an incentive of $2,500

The government says “businesses will be eligible for a full tax write-off on some ZEVs in the year they are put into use,” including the following types of vehicles:

  • battery-electric
  • plug-in hybrid electric (with a battery capacity of at least 15 kWh)
  • hydrogen fuel cell (including light, medium, and heavy-duty vehicles)

As for provincial and municipal governments, they can “get up to 10 incentives under this Program in a calendar year,” just like businesses too.

The Global Automakers of Canada, which represents 15 European and Asian brands in Canada, reacted to today’s announcement by saying, “Our members are pleased that Minister Garneau has clarified the parameters around the Budget incentive announcement and trust that they will kick-start consumer purchases of electric, plug-in hybrid electric, and hydrogen vehicles that had stalled with the uncertainty surrounding the application of the program.”

The federal government lists 27 vehicles applicable for this program, with manufacturers including Audi, Chevrolet, Chrysler, Ford, Honda, Hyundai, Kia, MINI, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Toyota, Volkswagen and vehicles from smart, as eligible for the rebate. The only 7-seater listed is the Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid.

Canada’s next federal election takes place on October 21, 2019. You read more about this new program over at the government’s FAQ page here.