Electric Vehicle Incentives on PEI

In the April 2019 Prince Edward Island general election both the Green Party and PC Party platforms promised to incentivize electric vehicle purchases (“Create a purchase incentive for electric vehicles” and “Develop a solar energy rebate and electric vehicle incentive program,” said the platforms, respectively); added to the recently announced federal inventive program, there might never be a better time to purchase a new electric vehicle on PEI.

If you can find a dealer to sell you one, that is.

The federal program covers vehicles from 14 manufacturers, but only Chevrolet, Ford, Hyundai, Kia, Nissan and Volkswagen have dealers in Charlottetown that sell battery-electric vehicles (as opposed to hybrids), and of those 6 makes:

  • Hillside Chevrolet has one Bolt on the lot, but it was sold and can’t be taken for a test drive (they’re expecting another soon).
  • Fair Isle Ford doesn’t carry the Focus Electric.
  • Experience Hyundai doesn’t carry any electric vehicles.
  • Discover Kia doesn’t carry any electric vehicles.
  • Centennial Nissan carries the Nissan Leaf, but doesn’t have any on the lot (they’re expecting two in the next couple of weeks).
  • Brown’s Volkswagen doesn’t carry the e-Golf (they told me there are none sold east of Ontario).

In other words, although the federal government will rebate me $5000 for the purchase of a battery-electric vehicle, there’s not a single battery electric vehicle in Charlottetown that I can take for a test drive.


Ghislaine 's picture
Ghislaine on May 13, 2019 - 17:31 Permalink

Mitsubishi? They have an electric SUV, but not sure if any on the lot here.

Peter Rukavina's picture
Peter Rukavina on May 13, 2019 - 17:32 Permalink

Mitsubishi’s Outlander is a plug-in hybrid, not a battery-electric vehicle.

Daniel's picture
Daniel on May 14, 2019 - 09:09 Permalink

This isn't specific to electric vehicles and is very moment-in-time - though dealerships seem like they have hundreds of cars on the lots, when you account for the various years, models, options, colors, etc. in fact it is typical for a dealership even in larger cities to have to order in a car for you and for you to test drive a proxy. Carrying significant inventory is not a prudent way to do business. Next week there might be 4 electric cars in Charlottetown to buy. Last week might've been the same.

When we went to purchase our latest cross-over, each dealership had something similar but not specific to the cars we wanted to see. We ended up buying one, then waiting a month for it to be shipped in via train from somewhere else.

Andrew's picture
Andrew on May 14, 2019 - 09:41 Permalink

One of the local dealerships should purchase an electric vehicle and keep it on the lot as a demo. There will be a demand for electric vehicles here, eventually, and now is the time for a dealership to step up and become known as the place to go for an electric vehicle on PEI.

Bruce Brown's picture
Bruce Brown on May 14, 2019 - 17:18 Permalink

Some the largest factories ever are being built currently in China, Europe and the US to produce batteries for electric vehicles. They are coming but alas it maybe a while before Islanders demand them. It's very much like everyone is driving a horse and buggy and Islanders are skeptical about the new fangled horse less vehicle type of era repeating itself once more.

Stephen Pate's picture
Stephen Pate on May 14, 2019 - 17:33 Permalink

The dealers make less profit on EV’s and the mfg are not creating incentives to carry them.

Terry Howatt's picture
Terry Howatt on May 16, 2019 - 08:09 Permalink

Hello there,

My husband and I are relatively new owners of an electric car, a Nissan Leaf. Had to go to Montreal to buy it. Your right none here.
This will be very short notice, EVAPEI are having a group meeting tonight in Cornwall. We are all ev owners or going to be new owners. There will be special guests there as well. Hopefully our new Green MLA Steve Howard, dept of highways, energy, infrastructure critic, other special guests as well. I hope you can come, yes short notice, just seen your posts, understand if you can’t make it tonight. Please join our group as well. Thanks, Terry

William White's picture
William White on August 3, 2019 - 11:33 Permalink

Never mind the new market consider the used market. In Quebec there is a $4K rebate on used electrics and their rebate system is really serious. Many people getting in to electrics want to try them first, buy a used one, see how they like it. I'm considering one because I use a half ton at work but if I can justify having a second vehicle I can use it for running around, doing estimates etc., but the cost of insurance and taxes on a second vehicle will not make it feasible so I'll just continue to burn gas. Government will have to get a lot more serious to make this work. The perpetual sales tax on used rigs has got to go, it's a killer.

Tyler Veinot's picture
Tyler Veinot on November 7, 2020 - 10:45 Permalink

I would like to see rebates expanded to include EV Motorcycles, Mopeds, and Electric Assisted Bicycles. I know these things are considered "toys" but look at it this way. It is easier to get people to make good decisions when they are fun, and if it reduces the use of gas vehicles then it is a win right? So what if I am having fun doing it. I would really like an electric assisted mountain bike but I cannot justify the expense. Or an electric dual sport motorcycle, but at the cost of one, 7500 and up, I can get a used gas one for far far less than the new budget model electric. A new gas one for about half the cost of a better longer range offering like Zero's FX. I see lots of scooters and mopeds on the streets, both electric and gas, and I really think that it would suit 90% of most peoples commutes 3/4 of a year in PEI. My point is if you can afford an ev for 100% of your travel that is great but many can't. If there is an option that gets people 40% or 60% off fossil fuels then thats a better than nothing right, and it only goes up from there...