From the way the mainstream media hype electric cars, one would think that they were just around every corner. However, spotting one in Boston is like finding an open parking space on Newbury St. It can happen, but you have a better chance of seeing two baby pigeons playing together. Luckily, Nissan issued a press announcement August 24rth that cleared all this up. Apparently, the EVs are all hiding on the left coast.
Six of the top eight cities that Nissan sells Leafs are in west coast states. Seven out of eight are western if you count Honolulu. New York is Nissan’s 15th largest city for sales and Boston is not even on the list. The reason has a lot to do with the marketing focus of the vehicles by their makers, but also where the money is. Atlanta makes the list at a solid number three, being the only Eastern city to break into the top 10. How did that happen? Bribes. Georgian taxpayers give Nissan Leaf buyers, and other EV buyers $5,000 by way of a state tax credit. That is on top of federal incentives provided by US taxpayers that can add up to $12,500 for EVs. Atlanta also lets the EVs cruise the HOV lanes. High occupancy vehicle used to be the name for those special lanes paid for by gas taxes before there were any EVs. Now they are called “HOT” lanes.
The Leaf and the “extended range EV” Chevy Volt vie to be the top selling EV each month. Other types of green-machines like Plug-in hybrids and conventional hybrids are making life tough for the pure EVs though. Lease prices have dropped like a rock and most EVs are seeing double digit reductions in MSRP each year. That makes jumping in now hard for some who would like an EV, but don’t want to be the one who overpaid.