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Norway hands out $90,000 to buy Teslas

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Michael Bastasch Energy Editor
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Electric cars recently moved to the number one slot for newly registered vehicles in Norway, thanks in part to generous subsidies from the government —  the Scandinavian country is handing out $90,000 to citizens willing to buy a Tesla.

Norway has seen the use of electric cars grow rapidly, doubling in a year, reports the German newspaper TAZ. There are now 14,000 electric cars on Norwegian roads, making up 5.6 percent of new car registration in last month — the highest percentage of any European country. The Tesla model S made up 5.1 percent of newly registered cars.

However, there is a reason for an increasing amount of Norse men and women going “green.” Electric car buyers can get up to $90,000 in subsidies for buying the cars — twelve times more than the U.S. government hands out in electric car subsidies.

The $90,000 subsidy includes many perks. Electric car buyers are exempt from paying the country’s 25 percent value added tax on their vehicle and they get a bigger income tax deduction for buying a green car than for a traditional car.

EV owners also don’t have to pay bridge and highway tolls and are allowed to use bus lanes in big cities.

“Calculated that the Treasury subsidizes the buyer of a luxury electric cars like the Tesla S at the equivalent of 60,000 to 70,000 euros, have now led to a debate whether state funding would not be an exaggeration,” reports TAZ.

In the U.S., the federal government shells out a maximum of $7,500 per electric vehicle. Various states also have their own incentive programs for electric cars on top of the federal tax credit. California, for example, has one of the most generous electric car incentives, offering up to $2,500 for some electric vehicles and discounted charing prices during peak hours.

The state also exempts electric vehicles from high-occupancy vehicle lane laws and certain cities offer free parking to green cars.

The Obama administration promised during his first term to get 1 million more electric cars on the road by 2015. Applying Norwegian subsidies to Obama’s. green car goal would have cost taxpayers $90 billion by 2015.

However, the administration backed away from its ambitious green cars goal earlier this year after a CBS News investigation last year found that only 300,000 electric cars would be on the road by 2015 — far short of the president’s goal.

(H/T NoTricksZone)

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