November CHEAPR

New CHEAPR incentives to arrive this year

Expansions to CHEAPR, courtesy of Public Act 22-25, passed by the legislature last year, effective as of July 2022, implemented piecemeal as they are built, will see the remaining parts come online this year. The new pre-qualification process for income limited incentives should be ready by the end of March and the “non-personal” incentives (businesses, municipalities, etc.) should be ready at some point in the second quarter. Unlike the cash on the hood consumer rebates, the non-personal incentives will have a post purchase process to claim the rebate. These will tell the tale as to whether the program will accelerate to a higher level. We are also expecting DEEP to expand the list of eligible used EVs, which we feel are unnecessarily constrained to only vehicles that were eligible as new vehicles.

November was similar to October with 121 rebates, slightly higher than the 112 (slightly restated) for November. Below is the distribution by model with the Tesla Model 3 the largest, followed by the Toyota RAV4 Prime PHEV and the Chevy Bolt EUV. The file sometimes breaks out different trim levels, which is what happened with the RAV4, where the SE (2 rebates) was reported separately. As we’ve noted before, CHEAPR can be a useful proxy to gauge which models that fit under the price cap are resonating with consumers, but it does that less well in this period where there are supply shortages. For example, even though the Bolt EUV looks like it is successful, GM is still dealing with recovering from the extensive recall and as a result, it is building replacement battery packs alongside new vehicles. That is a GM specific circumstance, but it has the same effect of constraining deliveries.

There was one income-limited rebate in November, a used Chevy Bolt.



Nov 22 CHEAPR Rebates by Model

October CHEAPR Update

Steady as She Goes – Rebates Have Plateaued for the Time Being

CHEAPR rebates are up over 50% since the MSRP cap was raised in July. Rebates averaged 74 per month for the first half of the year. Since that time, that has increased to 115. It has been holding steady at that point. October had 111 rebates. September was restated (a common thing) to 118.

There is a CHEAPR board meeting on Dec. 15, so any updates regarding progress on implementation of the new aspects of the program will be communicated in our next update.

Below is the distribution of rebates by model. This is done using the data as it directly comes from CHEAPR. It can be a little unpredictable how they characterize models. For example, there are 22 Toyota RAV4 Prime and 1 Toyota RAV4 Prime Plug in Hybrid SE. I suspect it is just a matter of not handling the data consistently. My preference would be to consolidate the model name.

Rebates by model Oct 2022

The Toyota RAV4 Prime, which had been the dominant rebated vehicle is no longer alone. Since Chevy emerged from its Bolt battery recall and restarted production, the Bolt numbers have climbed significantly. The EUV version hugely outperforms the original hatchback.

Now that the base model Tesla Model 3 is again eligible, it is a regular high performer, though delivery timing causes the numbers to fluctuate.

The Toyota Prius, once the fuel-efficiency darling of the automotive world has been cannibilized by all manner of plug-in vehicles entering the market. The plug-in version of the Prius, the Prime, has taken a nosedive ever since the RAV4 Prime was unveiled. The RAV4 Prime is, of course, in the popular SUV segment, and it has a longer electric range than the Prius Prime, 42 vs 25 miles. Toyota has announced a refresh of the Prius beginning with the 2024 model year. The PHEV reportedly is going to have an electric range of about 40 miles (this car has not yet been EPA rated).

There were no income-limited rebates awarded in October.

When we have December data, we will update our dealer rebate profile. Look for it in February.

Geography of CT EVs July 2022

Geographic Profile – Counties and Cities July 2022

All data are from a Freedom of Information Act Request filed with the Department of Motor Vehicles for EV registration data as of July 1. Due to space constraints, many of the screen captures below do not show the full chart. All of the data is published to the website on the Interactive EV Dashboard. Complete charts are there, including slicers and sliders.

This chart shows year over year growth in EVs by County (July 2022/July 2021). Fairfield County continues to account for about 40% of the EVs registered in the state.

July 2022 vs July 2021 EVs by County in CT

Greenwich, Stamford, and Westport retain their positions as the top cities in terms of EV registrations. This is the trend by city since January of 2020. While the top cities have remained consistent, there are shifting ranks among a number of cities. The top 3 have now exceeded 1000 registered EVs. In this static screenshot, there isn’t enough room to display all cities. They will be able to be seen when the dashboard is published (soon).

EV Count By City Trend Jan 2020 thru July 2022

Westport remains the top city in EVs per capita, but some of the smaller cities, such as Weston and New Canaan are near the top when adjusted for population.

July 2022 CT City EVs per Capita

Below is a chart of cities ranked by median income (bars) with a linear overlay of EVs per capita. Yes, EV adoption still skews upmarket, though there are exceptions, not all of them visible within the space of the screenshot.

EVs Per Capita with Median Income July 2022



Are We There Yet?

What Is the Progress Toward the Goal in the ZEV Plan

This has been quite a year for EVs – a major revamp of the federal incentive, an improved CT CHEAPR program, utility incentives for charging, a federal infrastructure bill providing over $50MM to CT to support a public EV charging station build out along major highway corridors, and most importantly, increased consumer interest. Unfortunately, there have also been supply chain disruptions and chip shortages leading to higher costs and a lack of inventory. Tesla and Rivian raised prices. Tesla blamed missing its Q3 delivery target on snaggled logistics. Many dealers have been charging a “market adjustment fee”, i.e. raising the price above sticker, sometimes way over sticker, or trying to force consumers to buy options they didn’t order. Dealers aren’t keeping demo vehicles on the lot because they are selling whatever they get their hands on. Consumers report waiting for long periods to get their vehicle. And finally, while we welcome the removal of the manufacturer cap in the revised federal incentive, it looks like it will create confusion for the first year or 2 with its complexity and uncertainty with respect to manufacturers aligning their manufacturing to meet the requirements.

So where does that leave us? We are up to 25,444 EVs (defined as BEV, PHEV, along with electric motorcycles and fuel cell). That is how it is defined at DMV and what is published on its website. This is a July 1 number.

EV Trend 2017 - July 2022


The state has established a goal of 500,000 EVs registered by 2030 with an interim goal of 125-150,000 by 2025. This comes to us via the Multistate Zero Emission Vehicle Action Plan Memorandum of Understanding. A lot of words for a non-binding document, but a useful yardstick for expectations, nonetheless. The chart at the top of the post represents where we’ve been (blue), where we are as of July 1 (dark blue dot), and where we need to be with the goals graphed on a straight line basis (magenta line). We need substantial increases every year, order of magnitude of 50% in net registrations. This is the turnover over the past year, the equivalent of roughly a quarter of acquisitions. That means sales (new + used) need to increase about 75% annually to get to that net figure.

For whatever reason, one of the questions we always get is how many fuel cell vehicles are registered. 6.

Turnover Jul 22 v Jul 21

We have recently been close to that but it becomes a taller order as the baseline gets higher. Growth over the past year is about 48% (25,444/17,217), but the pace fell in the past 6 months to a level below the same period one year ago. We should ideally be overachieving at this stage.

% Growth by 6 Month Intervals thru July 2022

There is momentum, but it has yet to be manifest in the numbers. It is important to keep in mind that the steep percentage increases required to meet the goals will be a greater challenge as the baseline increases. And it may take another year to assess true demand levels.


Not So Fast

CHEAPR Rebates Dip in September

It looked like we were on a roll with rebates having risen from 59 in June to 93 (implementation of higher MSRP cap) in July to 136 in August (restated from an earlier 119), but September has retreated to 114. Maybe it, too, will be restated next month. Hanging over all of this are the continuing difficult market conditions.

I have made a technical change beginning with September. The spreadsheet published by DEEP double counts vehicles/people receiving the Rebate+ New (supplemental incentive for income-limited consumers) rebates. It appears as a separate row in the file (i.e. one row for the standard rebate and a second row for the supplement) and the count reflects the number of rows, not the number of vehicles. (This is not the case for Rebate+ Used, where there is one row per vehicle.) So in the chart at the top of the page, there are 114 rebates listed, as opposed to 116 in the chart on the DEEP website. At this time, it is not causing major differences, but the potential for that to happen will increase when the new program goes live at some point next year.

There were 3 Rebate+ incentives in September – 2 new and 1 used.

Below is the rebate by model chart.

CHEAPR Rebates by Model September 2022

The spike for Tesla is similar to what we have seen in the past when Tesla used to be eligible. They batch their deliveries and clearly a bunch of Model 3 SR RWD arrived (the only eligible model). Also, as we’ve learned, a higher percentage of Teslas that are eligible for a rebate get the rebate. The reason is that it is baked into their order flow process, which is not the case with anyone else. DEEP has reported that there are many eligible vehicles that do not get the rebate.

Chevy may have a success on its hands with the Bolt EUV. Most of the action in the BEV world has been with higher-end vehicles. It is a hopeful sign that a vehicle with an entry price of $27,200 that received 8/10 ratings from Car and Driver and Edmunds is getting traction.

For a period of time, CHEAPR seemed like the RAV4 rebate program as that vehicle had become so dominant. This month is way down. Is it because of inventory issues or is it the continued movement of the market towards BEVs? It is down roughly 40% from where it had been tracking. And the Prius Prime continues to be in a long term decline, which I speculate is likely about the noncompetitiveness of the vehicle and not the supply. Toyota now has one BEV, the bZ4X EUV. It is a 2023 model year, shipped in very limited quantities. Also, it was subject to a recall shortly after it began shipping. Sharp turns or hard braking could loosen a hub bolt, risking the wheel possibly coming off.  Deliveries resumed earlier this month. This vehicle will be CHEAPR eligible. None are registered in CT as of July 1.

Signs of Life for CHEAPR

Rebates Increase Due to Higher MSRP Cap

CHEAPR rebates rose to 115 in August, and July was restated to 92, up from 57 in June and the low point for this year in February of 50. There are several models that received rebates that would not have been eligible before the increase in the MSRP. Unfortunately, there were no income-limited (LMI) rebates in August. The revised LMI rules, along with the other program changes that require back-end development, are still a ways away from implementation. It won’t be until next year when all the changes are live. DEEP has published a timeline, but as we get closer and dates become more definitive, we will update.

The presence of the Mustang Mach-E, Tesla Model 3, Hyundai Ioniq 5, and possibly some of the VW ID.4 are the result of the more generous MSRP allowance. The Chevy Bolt is finally making a rebound, and it is the new EUV variation that overwhelmingly dominates in this tranche of rebates. (We don’t know if this is driven by consumer behavior or GM production priorities.) This is the first month in quite a while where the Toyota RAV4 Prime hasn’t been the overwhelmingly dominant model. Another change is that BEVs accounted for a majority (56%) of the rebates. Overall, BEVs, which tend to be more expensive, account for 60% of registered EVs.

Rebates by model, August 2022

Tesla Still Driving EV Adoption

Registered EVs by Make

The pace of new EV model introductions has dramatically increased over the past year, but it is still Tesla that is driving the largest share of adoption. In other words, Tesla leads in overall registrations, as expected, but continues to add more EV registrations than anyone else. These are crazy times as consumers and the industry wrestle with the fallout of a war, chip shortage, and disrupted supply chains. We don’t know how the trends will shake out, but for the first time we can really see a broader consumer EV demand across the board.

This is the trend of registrations by top EV makes. There are a relatively small number of companies that account for the bulk of the registrations, followed by a (very) long tail, longer than this static screenshot can accommodate. (An update will be posted to the EV Dashboard, which has the interactivity.)  The chart is ranked by registrations as of July 1, 2022.

Trend of Top EV makes Thru July 2022

Tesla has pretty much maintained market share. It is responsible for 42% (the same as in January) of all plug-in vehicles and 69% of BEVs, which is down from 71% in January. The movement in the numbers reflects the continuing shift in the market to BEVs. Both pie charts have the same title, but the second one is filtered for BEVs.

Share of all plug in vehicles by make



The growth with Tesla was still powered by the Model 3. Even though industry reports indicates the Model Y is the largest selling Tesla model (actually, largest seller among all EVs), there were more Model 3s added to this latest file. It may have to do with this file being net registrations and more trading of the Model 3 as a used vehicle, but even restricting the data to the 2022 model year, the Model 3 still has more registrations than the Model Y. There are now  Tesla added a net additional 3505 registrations and not has a total of 10,564, roughly 3x its nearest competitor.

This chart shows the relative growth contribution of each manufacturer over the past year.

EV Growth Contribution by Make

Below are the individual Tesla models.

Tesla Model Growth

One of the questions we get is which new models are appearing in our data. This is an arbitrary selection of some newer models. Some were introduced more recently than others and many are back-ordered. Can you spell “s-u-p-p-l-y c-h-a-i-n?”

Newer EV Models July 2022

The second most widely registered make is Toyota, which has surpassed GM a few years ago and has grown its lead with the successful RAV4 Prime PHEV. That model appears to have taken share from its Prius stablemate. The new BEV, the bz4X, does not appear in the file. Included are 6 Mirai fuel cell vehicles and the discontinued compliance car, the BEV RAV 4. There are 3632 Toyotas.

Toyota Model Growth

Chevy follows next, having slipped from second to third. With Volt sales having been discontinued in 2019 and the prolonged, extensive Bolt recall, Chevy has been flat for a while, and actually slightly down from January. Its total is 1815.

In fourth position is Ford, which is on a growth curve with 2 successful, though supply-constrained, BEVs in the Mustang Mach-E and the F-150 Lightning. Very few of the latter have been delivered. The Ford total is now 1324. Ford looks to be positioned for the strongest non-Tesla growth if they can ramp deliveries.

Ford Growth by Model

Hyundai, boosted by its successful Ioniq 5, the company’s first purpose-built EV platform, comes next with 1301 total registrations.

Hyundai Model Growth

The only other manufacturer with over 1,000 registrations is BMW at 1032. BMW has always had a large number of plug in models produced, but the X5 PHEV is the first one to get noticeable traction. Their new BEV models, the i4 and iX, have not made an impact as yet.

BMW Model Growth

Volvo, Jeep, and Nissan have between 500 and 1000 registered EVs. Then the tail gets long with 31 makes represented among the population of registered EVs. In future posts, we will examine how we are pacing relative to goals, along with the geographic patterns across the state.





CHEAPR July 2022 Update

New CHEAPR, Though Still A Slow Pace of Rebates

There were 57 CHEAPR rebates awarded in July, the first month where the higher MSRP cap, now $50,000, was in effect. This was the same number as in June. We don’t expect to get a clear reading on the new program for a while given current supply constraints and the fact that the program is undergoing a phased rollout. One aspect that is still a ways from being rolled out is the revised income-limited incentives. The earlier version dating to 2021 is still in place, but there were no Rebate Plus incentives given in July.

We did see the appearance of 2 models that would not have previously been eligible – the Hyundai Ioniq 5 with 6 rebates and the Tesla Model 3 with 1 rebate. The rebate activity continues to be dominated by the Toyota RAV4 Prime (24 rebates). The second most rebated vehicle was the Chevy Bolt with 10. It looks like the Bolt is finally getting past the purgatory of its extensive recall/battery replacement. The newer EUV version accounting for 9 of the 10 rebates.

July 2022 Rebates by Model

CHEAPR June Wrap – The New Program Awaits

“Old CHEAPR” Quietly Ends – How Fast Will The New Program Ramp?

June was a slow rebate month by any measure with just 57 rebates, of which 41 were PHEV. These numbers continue recent trends of a low-volume PHEV-heavy program. The Toyota RAV4 Prime, the popular PHEV SUV, continues to dominate the rebates. There were no income-limited rebates.

June CHEAPR rebates by model

Looking at the trend in the chart in the featured image, one can see the rebate trend increase as more EVs came on the market with the big spike being due to the Tesla Model 3. Then there is a big drop in Q4 of 2019 when the MSRP cap was reduced. There was another trough during the pandemic, followed by a spike due to pent up demand, which has now leveled off at an anemic rate this year. We look forward to seeing more incentives used beginning with July.

Higher MSRP Cap Now in Effect

The components of the new program as legislated in Public Act 22-25 (previously referred to as SB-4 when it was wending its way through the legislature) are being implemented as they are operationally ready. The simplest change was the increase in the MSRP cap to $50,000. That went into effect July 1. There will be over 10 new vehicles that now become eligible, including some important BEVs such as the Hyundai Ioniq 5 and its sibling Kia EV6, Polestar 2, the Mustang Mach-E, and the Tesla Model 3 Standard Range Rear Wheel Drive. Most of the EVs on the market come in multiple trim levels. The base price of the trim level determines a vehicle’s eligibility.

Coming Enhancements

Looser eligibility requirements for the income-limited incentives. The requirement is now an income level that is a maximum of three times the poverty level. These incentives come in the form of an additional incentive for a new EV or an incentive for a used EVs. Used EVs have to be purchased through a dealership (either a new or used dealership, including virtual, i.e. not private sales) to be eligible. DEEP may revise the size of these incentives. We’ll update when we are closer to implementation, which will most likely be near the end of the year.

CHEAPR since 2019 has been residential only, but now it is extended to business, non-profits, municipal, fleets, and tribal entities. This is expected to be implemented as of the fall. After the next board meeting in September, we should have a firmer idea.

$500 rebate for eligible e-bikes (income limited). ETA unknown, but probably around the end of the year.

All licensed drivers are entitled to use the rebate twice (beginning as of June 2021). The newly eligible categories, such as businesses or municipalities get up to 10 rebates per year with a total cap of 20.

Budget Blues?

Most, if not all, state rebate programs have to steward the budget carefully. If the funds are expended before the next replenishment, the program either has to be suspended or the rebate can be granted and paid after the fact. Neither is an appealing scenario. NJ is a case of the former, where the state burns through the money and rebates become unavailable for a period of time.

CHEAPR has had 3 different funding mechanisms at different points since its inception in 2015. Prior to this new relaunch, the legislature had funded the program at $3 million annually since 2019. It isn’t a robust amount and DEEP has been concerned, based on modeling from its consultant, about program over-spending. However, DEEP made cuts to both the size of the incentive and the MSRP cap, which caused the program to be vastly under-spent. The unpredictable variable has been utilization rate. A persistently lower number of eligible purchasers have availed themselves of the rebate than projected.

The higher MSRP cap and the new enhancements will increase the spend substantially. The consultant again modeled that if the utilization rate ticks up, the program could run too hot. Should we be concerned about budget?

I don’t think we have much to worry about in the short term, at least until 2024 and probably later than that. The unspent funds get rolled over and the program has a reserve of over $5MM. The budget for the new program increases from $3MM to roughly $8MM by virtue of the entirety of the clean air fees collected going to support the program. With registration moving from biennial to triennial, there could conceivably be some front-loaded revenue. Many of the new enhancements won’t be ready until late in the year. Only $566,750 in consumer rebates were awarded in the first half of 2022 (plus expenditures for admin and dealer incentives) so the reserve will quite possibly increase. Finally, there will be additional funding coming in from the Regional Greenhouse Gases Initiative (RGGI) auction proceeds. It doesn’t kick in right away and I have not heard a specific number, but a ballpark guess is $2-3MM.

Bottom line – we don’t have to be overly concerned and there will be plenty of time to gather data to forecast and make adjustments if necessary.

Volunteers for Sierra Club EV Shopper Study

Volunteers Needed For Sierra Club Rev Up EV Shopper Study, Round 3

The Sierra Club is fielding a third round of its Rev Up EV Shopper Study and is asking for help from the EV Club. Help is defined as visiting dealerships with a set of questions to ask and items to observe to assess if a dealership is making a serious effort to sell electric vehicles. The last study, like the new one, was national, and was done in 2019. At that point, there were serious deficiencies with respect to dealership commitment to EV sales. The prior study can be found here. These were some of the key findings:

Sierra Club Rev Up EV Shopper Study Key findings

A lot has changed in the macro EV environment since 2019 and we look forward to seeing the new findings. As we did last time, we will ask the Sierra Club to join us at a meeting to discuss the study results.

This link will take you to the Sierra Club page about the study. If you volunteer, they will follow up with you directly. Feel free to let the club know about your experience with the survey. We got some interesting additional texture last time from participating members – more like a focus group to complement the quantitative survey results.

It is not necessary to be a member of the Sierra Club or EV Club to participate. There are questions about the Tesla shopping experience in the study which serve as a useful point of comparison. We appreciate the participation of Tesla owners as well.

One final note. This club supports changing the franchise laws to allow direct sales by EV-exclusive manufacturers. Even though we and other like-minded individuals and organizations have not yet carried the day, these studies, and findings like that pictured above, have been an important data point in our arguments that excluding these companies from doing business in CT serves to slow EV adoption.