Efficiency Maine Boosts Electric Vehicle Program with Rebate for Trucks and Vans, New Fleet Incentives, and New Rebate Reservation Process for Dealerships
Augusta, Maine – March 8, 2022 — Efficiency Maine today announced several enhancements to its Electric Vehicle (EV) Program, including the addition of new vehicles, incentives, and promotions designed to provide Maine drivers, particularly businesses and local governments, with more options when they purchase an EV.
Heading the updates to the program is the addition of the Ford F-150 Lightning pickup truck to the list of rebate-eligible vehicles, bringing the number of eligible vehicle models in the program to 24. The quasi-state agency also has increased the price cap for trucks and vans and launched a promotion for business fleets, and is implementing a process for car dealerships that will enable them to reserve a rebate for an EV that has been ordered with a paid deposit.
“We’re excited to expand our program to meet the needs of Mainers who primarily drive pickup trucks, as well as to continue to address the needs of businesses and governmental entities that maintain fleets,” said Michael Stoddard, executive director of the Efficiency Maine Trust. “We know Maine businesses can lower their fuel and maintenance costs by switching to electric vehicles, and as these new EV trucks and vans become available, our new rebates will encourage consumers to take that step.”
Light-duty passenger trucks, which include pickup trucks and SUVs, accounted for 58.6 percent of all light-duty vehicles on the road in Maine in 2020, according to data from the Maine Bureau of Motor Vehicles. Pickup trucks alone are estimated to comprise around 25 percent of Maine’s light-duty vehicles on the road.
Because EV trucks and vans used in commerce are larger and engineered for heavier workloads, their purchase price tends to be higher than the types of EV sedans and crossover SUVs that have characterized the EV market to date. This has led Efficiency Maine to increase the eligibility price cap as follows:
- $73,000 for trucks and vans with an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-rated range of 300 miles or greater
- $65,000 for trucks and vans with EPA-rated range of less than 300 miles
- $50,000 for all other vehicles
The Efficiency Maine EV Program now also includes new incentives for business fleets in an effort to encourage Maine businesses to switch to electric vehicles. As of January 1, businesses with five or more vehicles registered in Maine can receive up to $4,500 for a battery electric vehicle (BEV) and $3,500 for a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV). The program also now offers rebates on commercial vans (currently only the Ford E-Transit is available and qualifies). Maine businesses of any size can receive $8,000 for a cargo van and $5,000 for a chassis cab or cutaway version of the vehicle. This promotion is available for the first 50 cars and the first 50 vans on a first-come, first-served basis.
Efficiency Maine’s EV program provides instant rebates for eligible BEVs and PHEVs at 71 participating car dealers in Maine. The standard rebate is $2,000 for a BEV and $1,000 for a PHEV. Higher rebates are available for low-income customers, governmental entities, and select nonprofits. To learn more, visit https://www.efficiencymaine.com/electric-vehicle-rebates/.
Efficiency Maine provides a one-stop shop for information about EVs, rebates, and charging infrastructure to help Maine consumers become more comfortable with EVs. It maintains a library of EV resources on its website, including a series of 2- to 4-minute EV educational videos featuring Maine humorist and car enthusiast Tim Sample.
The Trust debuted the EV video campaign last fall with an introductory segment titled “Go the Distance in an Electric Vehicle,” which features Sample talking about the “new cars” on the roads in Maine — EVs. Sample lists some of the benefits of EVs placed in the context of the state’s goals to reduce carbon emissions.
The instructional videos featuring Sample cover a variety of topics: where and how to find EV chargers, how to use a public charger, home charging installation tips, how to maximize a home charge, how to recognize the different types of public charger plugs, ways to pay for public EV charging, and “one-pedal driving,” which enables drivers to come to a full stop without using the brake pedal.
New videos for businesses and other property owners interested in EV charging recently were added that cover practical issues, such as reasons to install a public EV charger, choosing an appropriate charging site, sizing the electrical panels, and how to find equipment and installers. The videos focus on Level 2 charging, which is suitable for places where drivers park their cars for longer than one and a half hours. In addition to the Efficiency Maine website, all of the videos can be found on the Efficiency Maine YouTube Channel.
Mainers also can find extensive written materials on the Efficiency Maine EV web pages, including a guidebook on “How to Select and Install a Home Electric Vehicle Charger,” which provides useful information and tips for current and prospective EV owners.
The guide is being distributed through Efficiency Maine EV Participating Dealers, online, and through partner organizations. Hard copies of the guide can be requested by calling 866-376-2463 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. A digital copy is available at www.efficiencymaine.com/docs/EV-Home-Charger-Guide.pdf.
In addition to its well-known vehicle rebates, Efficiency Maine’s EV work includes an initiative to support the installation of a network of universal, publicly accessible EV chargers across Maine, including a network of high-speed EV chargers (also called “Level 3” chargers or “DC fast chargers”) on the Maine Turnpike. New DC Fast chargers are under development in Lewiston, Auburn, Fairfield, Newport, Bangor, Ellsworth, and Belfast. A subsequent phase will develop DC Fast chargers in Aroostook and Washington counties, allowing EV drivers to travel north and east to the New Brunswick border.
Efficiency Maine is also supporting the expansion of lower-cost, public Level 2 chargers in other strategic locations across the state. To date, it has helped fund 230 new plugs in Maine’s public EV charging network, which has now grown to a total of 137 DC high-speed charging plugs and 452 Level 2 “community” plugs. Consumers can find these charger locations using the charging station locator on the quasi-state agency’s website.
To learn more about electric vehicle technology and how to maximize its benefits visit www.efficiencymaine.com/ev.
About Efficiency Maine Trust
The Efficiency Maine Trust (the Trust) is the administrator for programs to improve the efficiency of energy use and reduce greenhouse gasses in Maine. The Trust serves all sectors and all regions of the state. Its suite of nationally recognized programs provides consumer information, discounts, rebates, loans and investments for high-efficiency, clean energy equipment and strategies to manage energy demand. The Trust is a quasi-state agency governed by a Board of Trustees with oversight from the Maine Public Utilities Commission. More information on Efficiency Maine can be found at efficiencymaine.com.
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Kate Rankin, Senior Communications Manager
Efficiency Maine Trust