After the “Inflation Cut Act of 2022” was announced in the US Senate this week, the electric vehicle community has understandably focused on reforming the federal tax credit for electric vehicles; It will restore access to the incentive for Tesla and GM EV buyers. There are also a lot of other requirements that should make things interesting if the bill becomes law.
There are other aspects of the bill related to electric vehicles, but not consumer electric vehicles.
For example, there is a section on “clean commercial vehicles” that is expected to apply to electric trucks. Offers incentives of up to $40,000 for clean commercial vehicles over 14,000 pounds:
The amount specified under this subsection in respect of any qualifying clean commercial vehicle shall not exceed—“(a) in the case of a vehicle with a gross weight of less than 14,000 pounds, $7,500, and (b) in the case of a vehicle not described in subparagraph (a). ), $40,000.
This is likely intended primarily to encourage sales of electric semi-trucks such as Tesla Semi and Daimler’s Freightliner Cascadia and even fuel cell electric hydrogen trucks, such as Nikola Motors vehicles.
For example, Tesla lists Tesla Semi starting at $150,000. At this price point, the cost of running an electric vehicle is already better per mile than diesel trucks, which dominate the trucking industry today.
A $40,000 incentive would bring the price down to $110,000, and make the cost-per-mile more competitive; That would be the federal level if the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 was passed, but there are also many incentives for commercial electric trucks in place at the state level in the US, in places like California for example.
However, that spur is primarily driving demand, which hasn’t really been an issue for electric trucks like the Tesla Semi, which has thousands of units backlogged.
Currently, the main problem for electric trucks is increased production, both actual electric tractors and the batteries needed to manufacture them, as each electric semi-truck will need 5 to 10 times the battery cells of the average electric vehicle.
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