Plug-in electric vehicles are a cleaner alternative to traditional vehicles, and with generous purchasing subsidies and lower fuel and operating costs, they can also be a cheaper alternative, too. The federal government, for example, offers a tax credit of up to $7,500 for an electric vehicle purchase. Pepco offers EV charger rebates and other incentives. And, fuel costs for EVs are about half that of traditional fuels, according to the the Depart of Energy's eGallon tool. This page is designed to provide a list of these and other incentives, as well as general information on electric vehicles for District residents and businesses.
Resources for Residents and Business
Here are a number of resources that provide information on electric vehicle (EV) ownership in the District.
- Electric vehicle basics: EV 101
- Charging your electric vehicle: EV Charging 101
- Pepco’s EV Savings calculator
- Transportation Electrification Roadmap - Stakeholder Engagement Sessions
Rebates, tax incentives and funding
Federal tax incentives
Federal tax incentives of up to $7,500 are still available for District residents and private fleet owners. An updated list of eligible vehicle make and models is available.
High Efficiency Vehicle Excise Tax Exemption
The District offers a tax exemption for EVs and high efficiency vehicles. Motor vehicles with fuel economy in excess of 40 mpg, including EVs, are eligible for an exemption for paying the vehicle excise tax. In 2019, the median excise tax per vehicle purchase was $680. The excise tax is expected to be revised in 2021.
Utility incentives for EV chargers and charging infrastructure
The cost and logistics of charging an electric vehicle is an important consideration for residents and businesses in making a decision to purchase an EV or install charging infrastructure. Fortunately, resources are available to help offset this cost through Pepco EVsmart program. Get more information about Pepco's EVsmart program.
EV Tax Credits
The District offers the following tax credits for alternate fuel infrastructure and alternative fuel conversions.
Alternative Fuel Infrastructure Credit
- The Alternative Fuel Infrastructure Credit is a credit of 50% of the allowable costs for the purchase and installation of an alternative fuel storage and dispensing or charging station at a private residence, or on non-residential property designed for use by the public.
- The credit shall not exceed $1,000 per station at a private residence and $10,000 per station on non-residential property designed for use by the public.
- Any unused credits can be carried forward for two years.
- More resources are avaiable at the Office of Tax and Revenue
Alternative Fuel Conversion Tax Credit
- Businesses and individuals are eligible for an income tax credit of 50% of the equipment and labor costs for the conversion of qualified alternative fuel vehicles, up to $19,000 per vehicle.
- Qualified alternative fuels include, ethanol blends of at least 85%, natural gas, propane, biodiesel, electricity, and hydrogen. This incentive expires December 31, 2026. For more information, see the Office of Tax and Revenue website.
Reduced Registration Fees for High Efficiency Vehicles
A new motor vehicle with a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimated average city fuel economy of at least 40 miles per gallon is eligible for a reduced vehicle registration fee of $36. This reduced rate applies to the first two years of registration and only the original purchaser, as denoted by the Manufacturer Certificate of Origin, is eligible.
Permitting within the District
EV chargers not installed on public property can be installed under the direction of the following permitting process. Permitting within the District of Columbia is administered by the DCRA and can be performed safely by the flowchart below and reach out with any questions or concerns you may have related to EV charger permitting. See more on the permitting process.