Waiting list grows for electric cars in the Valley

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) — Electric cars are a rare, but sought-out sight at Honda North in Clovis.

“We’re talking about one car a month coming into our dealership, and we’re one of the only dealerships that sell the electric-only Clarity electric vehicle,” said Joel Carlson, General Sales Manager of Honda North.

The dealership only has one hybrid Honda Clarity on the lot, but it’s not for sale. Carlson says they use it to give test drives to those interested in one. Honda North’s waitlist for a Clarity is already 30 people long.

“On a main charge you can get 90 miles, but depending on your driving habits, the range is 70-95 miles,” Carlson said.

Incentives are encouraging Californians to go green with local and state rebates and tax credits.

At Honda, a Clarity lease is $199 a month with a down payment of about $1,500.

Honda isn’t the only place selling electric vehicles; in fact, most brands now have at least one. That includes Audi, BMW, Chevrolet, Fiat, Hyundai, Jaguar, Kia, Nissan, Porsche, Smart, Tesla, and Volkswagen.

Over at Hedrick’s Chevrolet, the Chevy Bolt is on display.

“We sell a few of them because we ,have people that are concerned about the environment. With zero pollution, it has a niche market,” said Brett Hedrick, co-owner of Hedrick’s Chevrolet.

The Bolt can go 240 miles on one charge.

Hedrick says the incentives are helping drive sales.

“Most Bolt’s run in the $30,000s to $40,000s and you have about $10,000, depends on what you qualify for, in government rebates,” Hedrick said.

Air quality officials say people can take advantage of the “Drive Clean in the San Joaquin” rebate program, where they can get $3,000 back. The state has a clean program which gives an additional $2,500 back.

“A great way to do that is to go electric because you have no emissions to add to the Valley’s polluted air,” said Anthony Presto with Valley Air District.

Air officials say more charging stations are being set up to help drivers get to their destinations.

In addition to the car rebates, the Valley Air District also offers incentives to businesses and agencies. They’ll give a $5,000 grant to put in a charging station.

 

Waiting list grows for electric cars in the Valley, by Amanda Venegas, ABC 30, September 4, 2019.

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