AUGUST 30, 2018: The Electric Vehicle Sales Event, aimed at drivers in Garfield, Eagle and Pitkin counties, is offering discounts for the purchase or lease of plug-in electric vehicles from six auto dealerships for a 90-day period.
“We are building on the success of last year’s EV Sales Event, which led to sales of 42 plug-in electric vehicles,” said Matthew Shmigelsky, electric vehicle expert with CLEER.
For the 2018 sales event, running from Aug. 1 to Oct. 31, local auto dealerships are offering discounts of $515 to more than $4,000 on seven models of electric vehicles.
Participating dealers are Audi Glenwood Springs, Mountain Chevrolet, Berthod Motors, Phil Long Honda and Bighorn Toyota, all in Glenwood Springs, and Red Rock Nissan in Grand Junction.
The Electric Vehicle Sales Event is led by Garfield Clean Energy, CLEER and Refuel Colorado, and sponsored by Holy Cross Energy, City of Glenwood Springs, City of Aspen, Town of Vail, Eagle County, CORE, Walking Mountains Science Center, Alpine Bank and Colorado Mountain News Media.
The auto dealers and sponsors will host a series of four ride and drive events in Eagle, Glenwood Springs, Avon and Aspen for people to check out the vehicles, talk with auto sales staff, and take a short test drive.
Discounts offered by the dealerships during the EV Sales Event are for plug-in electric-gasoline hybrid models and for plug-in all-electric vehicles.
Dealer discounts can be combined with the state of Colorado’s $5,000 tax credit for purchase or $2,500 tax credit for lease, and a federal tax credit of up to $7,500. Together, they can significantly drive down the cost of a lease or purchase.
Electric vehicles are also less costly to operate. The electricity equivalent of a gallon of gasoline costs about $1.10 per “e-gallon.”
More affordable fuel and less overall maintenance means electric vehicles can help reduce the cost of living in resort communities, Shmigelsky noted.
Ride and drive events set for Eagle, Glenwood Springs, Avon and Aspen
Ride and drive events in the three-county area coincide with National Drive Electric Week, Sept. 8-16, and 300 community electric vehicle events happening in all 50 U.S. states and seven Canadian provinces.
Eagle County hosts an event from 4 to 6 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 6, at the Eagle County Administration Building, 500 Broadway, west side, in downtown Eagle.
Garfield Clean Energy, CLEER and the City of Glenwood Springs host an event from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 11, in the 800 block of Cooper Avenue, near Glenwood’s Downtown Market.
Walking Mountains Science Center hosts an event from 5 to 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 12, at 318 Walking Mountains Lane in Avon. That event will be followed at 6:30 p.m. by a free lecture, “The Science Behind Electric Vehicles.”
The City of Aspen hosts the last event from 1 to 4 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 14, at the Community Banks parking lot, 210 N. Mill St. in downtown Aspen.
Local drivers who already own plug-in electric vehicles are invited to attend the events and talk about the experience of owning and driving an electric vehicle.
Electric vehicles help clean air, support Colorado energy jobs
“Using electricity instead of gasoline for driving reduces carbon emissions,” Shmigelsky said. “Electricity in Colorado’s statewide average power mix is 36 percent cleaner than gasoline. As more renewable energy is added to the grid, electric vehicles will be even cleaner.”
Electric vehicles also support Colorado jobs and industry, as they shift the transportation fuel market away from oil and toward electricity, a domestic energy source. That supports Colorado electric utilities and their fuel providers in the coal, natural gas and renewable energy industries.
In 2017, the state of Colorado set a goal of 1 million electric vehicles on the road by 2030. Today, 15,000 EVs are registered in Colorado, and sales are growing by 50 to 60 percent per year, according to Will Toor, transportation program director for the Southwest Energy Efficiency Program (SWEEP) in Boulder.
To make up for not paying the state gasoline tax at the pump to support highway improvements, electric vehicle owners pay an added annual fee when licensing their cars.
Meanwhile, an infusion of funds from Volkswagen, in a legal settlement with states for the automaker’s cheating on emissions, will pay for new fast-charge stations across Colorado and in many other states. As charging locations come on line in the next few years, the ease of travel in an electric vehicle will become comparable to a gasoline-powered vehicle, Shmigelsky said.
EV Sales Event features six manufacturers
The EV Sales Event features five dealerships in Glenwood Springs and one in Grand Junction.
Audi Glenwood Springs is offering the Audi A3 e-tron Sportback plug-in hybrid SUV crossover, with a $4,500 manufacturer discount and a 6 percent dealer discount. The A3 e-tron can travel 16 miles in electric mode, with 380 miles total range using electric and gasoline.
Mountain Chevrolet is offering two models, both with a $1,000 discount. The Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrid sedan can travel 53 miles in electric mode, and 420 miles total range using electric and gasoline. The Bolt all-electric is a compact hatchback with a range of 238 miles on a charge.
Berthod Motors is offering the Chrysler Pacifica, a minivan with capacity for up to eight passengers, with a $1,000 discount. The Pacifica can travel 33 miles in electric mode, with 566 miles total range using electric and gasoline.
Phil Long Honda is offering the Honda Clarity and Clarity Touring plug-in hybrid sedans, with discounts of $515 for the Clarity and $711 for the Touring. Both models can travel 47 miles in electric mode, with 340 miles total range using electric and gasoline.
Red Rock Nissan, in Grand Junction, is offering the Nissan Leaf all-electric hatchback with three packages and discount amounts. The Leaf S is offered with a $1,737 discount, the Leaf SV with a $1,822 discount, and the Leaf SL with a $1,951 discount. Nissan USA is offering an additional $3,000 discount on all Leaf models through Sept. 30. The Leaf can travel up to 151 miles on a battery charge.
Bighorn Toyota is offering the Toyota Prius Prime plug-in hybrid hatchback with three packages, all with a discount of $1,000. All three models can travel 25 miles in electric mode, with 640 miles total range using electric and gasoline.
Anyone interested in driving an electric vehicle is encouraged to contact or visit any of the six participating dealers.
More information about the vehicles, dealerships, discounts and tax credits is available on the Garfield Clean Energy website, GarfieldCleanEnergy.org , or call CLEER at (970) 704-9200.