Everyone is talking about rising gas prices these days, with forecasts that they will continue to soar this spring.
That has many people considering something they wouldn't have looked twice at a year ago: an electric car or SUV.
Kevin Kushman says buying a Tesla 3 years ago was one of the best things he ever did.
"I love it," he said. "I have no complaints."
But for 2022, electric means much more than Tesla.
As we saw in all those Super Bowl ads, mainstream carmakers are now going all in on electric and plug-in hybrids, including even the top selling Ford F-150 pickup, now coming out as the F-150 Lightning.
Car shopper Pam Taylor never considered one before, but is now looking at the Mustang Mach-E.
"I do like the savings as far as gas mileage," she said, "but I do have to find out more about them."
Herman Davis says the electric Mustang is "really nice, with a lot of features in it."
If you are like most people you probably see 20 Jeep Wranglers every time you go to the grocery store. But you've probably never seen the new hybrid plug-in electric Wrangler.
Buying electric may finally make sense
With gas prices well over $3 a gallon (over $5 in California), a hybrid or electric vehicle can mean real savings, as opposed to two years ago when gas was selling for just $2 a gallon.
Even better: The government wants to help you buy one.
Thanks to last year's infrastructure bill, tax credits that had expired have now been renewed for most hybrid and electric vehicles.
If you check the site Fuel Economy.gov you'll see you can get:
- A $7,500 credit on a Jeep Plug in hybrid, Hyundai Ioniq, Mustang Mach-E, and Nissan Leaf, among others.
- A $4,500 on a Prius plug-in hybrid.
The credits, however, end once an automaker sells too many cars, which means you may not get a rebate for buying a Tesla or original Prius.
"You have a tax credit based on which type of vehicle you buy," Kevin Kushman explained. "Some have run out, for instance the Teslas have run out because they were oversubscribed. But all the new models have the opportunity to generate a personal tax incentive.
Tesla owner Kushman is so bullish he recently joined the electric vehicle industry, and now builds charging stations that go up in shopping centers and city parking lots through a company called Electrada.
And with more charging stations, and renewed credits, car buyers like Justin Drew are ready to buy.
"They used to be only for the rich, but now everyday Americans can get one too," he said.
And that way you don't waste your money.
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