Burlington, VT – Burlington Electric Department (BED) today launched its new Preferred Electric Vehicle Dealership Network through which BED will recommend that the Burlington community shop at local automobile dealerships that will make buying and leasing electric vehicles (EVs) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) more easy to navigate and will help advance Burlington’s 2030 goal of becoming a Net Zero Energy (NZE) city. The nine Network dealerships will process both BED and State of Vermont EV and PHEV rebates at the point of sale, allowing customers to benefit from the incentives in their financing packages and not need to engage in additional post-sale paperwork to claim rebates. Additionally, each of the dealers has pledged to meet and maintain the following criteria:
- Keep EVs and/or PHEVs in stock or available for order at all times;
- Have an EV charging station on-site at the dealership; and
- Employ staff trained in the technology and operational benefits of EVs and/or PHEVs.
“Electric vehicles are the key to achieving Burlington’s Net Zero Energy goals for ground transportation,” stated Mayor Miro Weinberger. “The Preferred Electric Vehicle Dealership Network will help Burlingtonians better leverage BED’s EV incentives, save money, and accelerate the decarbonization of our community.”
“BED is proud to partner with local auto dealerships that are committed to supporting electric vehicle adoption through our new Preferred Electric Vehicle Dealership Network,” stated BED General Manager Darren Springer. “This partnership will make purchasing or leasing an electric vehicle or plug-in hybrid more affordable at the point of sale for our customers. We know that driving electric and charging with BED’s 100 percent renewable electricity saves money for our customers compared to driving a conventional vehicle, and also helps keep more dollars in the local economy. The BED team is proud to advance this initiative in support of our Net Zero Energy goal.”
The nine automobile dealerships that are members of BED’s Preferred Electric Vehicle Dealership Network include:
- Audi South Burlington
- Berlin City Kia
- Burlington Hyundai
- Burlington Mitsubishi
- Burlington Subaru
- Freedom Nissan
- Key Chevrolet
- Shearer Volkswagen
- The Automaster Honda
With upfront cost as one of the most significant barriers to making the switch to cleaner driving, the ability for BED customers to aggregate multiple savings sources is critical to helping more Burlingtonians drive electric. Sources for and amounts of potential incentives include:
- BED rebates of between $800 and $1,800
- $1,200 rebates on new and leased EVs and PHEVs with an additional $600 (EVs) and $300 (PHEVs) for low- and moderate-income customers
- $800 rebates on pre-owned EVs and PHEVs
- State of Vermont rebates of between $1,500 and $5,000 for low- and moderate-income Vermonters
- Federal tax credit of up to $7,500 for EVs and PHEVs
- American Public Power Association/Nissan rebate of an additional $3,500 on the purchase or lease of a Nissan LEAF through March 31, 2020
In addition to these incentives, BED customers may take advantage of other opportunities and programs, including:
- Expanded availability of incentives, allowing two EV incentives for each single household or commercial customer (commercial customers with fleets larger than two vehicles may be eligible for additional incentives with prior BED approval – contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information);
- Special, off-peak residential EV charging rate allowing customers to charge for the equivalent of 60 cents per gallon of gas; and
- Additional public charging stations around Burlington
- BED recently installed a new charging station at the northwest corner of Main Street and St. Paul Street and will install two more at BED’s 585 Pine Street office.
- Four new charging station ports will be added at the City’s College Street Garage through grant funds available from the State’s settlement with Volkswagen.
Representatives from members of BED’s Preferred Electric Vehicle Dealership Network shared their thoughts about participating in the new program:
David Swartz, General Manager, Audi South Burlington: “In light of the success of our first EV, the E-Tron full-size SUV, we are pleased to announce that we have another EV coming mid-year, the all new E-Tron Sportback, an AWD crossover. Please watch our website audisouthburlington.com for updates. We’re glad to participate in BED’s new Preferred EV Dealership Network and hope the program brings more attention to the opportunities that come with driving electric.”
Dedrick Casab, General Manager, Berlin City Kia: “It is important to reduce carbon emissions for our future generations; this is something we take very seriously. Kia is expected to expand its current line-up from two – Niro and Soul – to six EVs within the next five years. Our commitment here at Berlin City Kia is to continue to support zero emission vehicles. We’re glad to partner with BED to reach more members of the Burlington community and, with Kia Niro and Soul reaching over 230 miles on a single charge, we anticipate expanding into the rural regions of Vermont.”
Brad Camp, Sales Manager, Burlington Hyundai: “At Burlington Hyundai, we are proud to be part of such a major step in tackling the climate emergency and honored to be included in BED’s Preferred Electric Vehicle Dealership Network. Increasing the use of electric vehicles is crucial to reducing the use of fossil fuels and their impact on the local environment. We’re fortunate that Hyundai has four EV models available to help meet the growing demand. As customers make the switch to electric, we will be here to help guide them through the process.”
Tim Bedard, General Manager, Burlington Mitsubishi: “As a Burlington resident and auto dealer, I doubly appreciate that Mayor Weinberger and our friends at Burlington Electric released a Net Zero Energy Roadmap to help Burlingtonians and Vermonters reduce their carbon footprints. At Burlington Mitsubishi, we understand that transportation is a major source of carbon emissions in Vermont and encourage our customers to consider the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV.”
Roger Williams, General Manager, Burlington Subaru: “As the home of the unofficial car of Vermont, Burlington Subaru is proud to be at the forefront of the EV initiative in our beautiful state. We value our partnerships with the State of Vermont, as well as Burlington Electric Department and the many other utility companies working on providing the best transportation solutions available. Please stop in to see the all new Crosstrek Hybrid, and feel free to use our charging station.”
David Swartz, General Manager, Shearer Volkswagen: “We are excited to launch Volkswagen’s newest EV in the second half of 2020. The ID CROZZ is an SUV that starts below $40,000. We anticipate a range of over 250 miles, and the EV will be available in AWD. We’re glad to participate in BED’s new Preferred EV Dealership Network and hope the program brings more attention to the opportunities that come with driving electric.”
Switching to an EV offsets more than 10,000 pounds of carbon per year. According to Drive Electric Vermont, the cost of ownership for EVs is less than gas-fueled vehicles because they require less maintenance and, on average, charging an EV is equivalent to paying approximately $1.50 or less per gallon for gas. The exact amount of savings customers receive depends on their income, the type of EV they buy or lease, and which rebates apply to their purchase or lease. When more Burlingtonians drive electric, benefits flow 100 percent back to all customers, helping to drive down costs to maintain the electric grid.
“Thanks to BED’s new Preferred EV Dealer Network, Burlingtonians are more empowered than ever to buy electric, which advances our City’s Net Zero Energy strategy while reducing carbon emissions and air pollution from the transportation sector,” stated Jennifer Green, City Sustainability Director. “We offer sincere thanks to all our Network members for their valued partnership.”
Members of the Burlington community are invited to visit BED’s new Preferred Electric Vehicle Dealership Network web page – burlingtonelectric.com/EVdealers – to learn more about the new program. Also, to learn more about the City’s path toward Net Zero Energy, please visit burlingtonelectric.com/NZE.