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SCE’s Pre-Owned EV Rebate Has Nationwide Impact

The Inflation Reduction Act’s tax credit for buyers of used EVs is modeled after SCE’s program.

One of the provisions of the Inflation Reduction Act that was just signed into law by President Biden is a $4,000 credit for buyers of pre-owned electric vehicles.

If that sounds familiar to Southern California Edison customers or employees, it should. The idea for the federal tax credit was inspired by SCE’s
Pre-Owned EV Rebate Program launched last year.

“We are honored that legislators chose to build off our idea of offering a credit for pre-owned EVs,” said Caroline Choi, senior vice president of Corporate Affairs for Edison International and SCE. “At SCE, our focus is on making sure that all of our customers benefit as we move toward a clean energy economy, and it’s thrilling to realize our effort is having an impact across the entire nation.”


SCE’s Pre-Owned EV Rebate Program inspired the idea for the $4,000 used-EV federal tax credit within the Inflation Reduction Act.

In SCE’s program, customers who purchase or lease a used EV can receive a standard rebate of $1,000 regardless of income, and certain income-qualified customers can receive $4,000.

Although very similar, the federal incentive will differ somewhat, setting the amount of the tax credit at $4,000 or 30% of the price of the vehicle, whichever is less, and has an income cap of $75,000 for individuals and $150,000 for couples. The used vehicle must be more than two years old and have a sales price of less than $25,000.

For new EV buyers, the Inflation Reduction Act extends an existing $7,500
credit for cars of up to $55,000 and trucks up to $80,000 in price. A 200,000-vehicle cap per manufacturer was eliminated, a move that was supported by SCE and many others.

Providing incentives for EV purchase or lease is among the policy recommendations Edison International, parent company of SCE, included in
Mind the Gap, an analysis of the policy changes and additions needed to ensure that California meets its goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 40% by 2030.

The new legislation, which goes into effect in January 2023, also provides:

  • Up to $20 billion in loans to build new clean vehicle manufacturing facilities across the country.
  • $2 billion in grants to retool existing auto manufacturing facilities to manufacture clean vehicles.
  • $3 billion to support the purchase and installation of zero-emission equipment and technology at ports.
  • $1 billion for clean heavy-duty vehicles like school and transit buses and service trucks.

The Act also includes $3 billion for the U.S. Postal Service to electrify its fleet, as well as increases in EV infrastructure tax incentives.

“We celebrate the progress being made, both at the federal and state levels,” Choi said, commending California for passing a budget that includes a $10 billion zero-emission vehicle package. “But we also realize the need to increase the pace of electric vehicle adoption and supportive infrastructure to meet the state’s ambitious goals.”

In order to meet those goals, SCE sees the
need to electrify three-quarters of passenger vehicles, two thirds of medium-duty and one-third of heavy-duty vehicles on California highways by 2045. That equates to 26 million passenger vehicles, 900,000 medium-duty and 170,000 heavy-duty vehicles. To achieve that level of transportation electrification, SCE estimates an investment need of $175 billion in clean energy, plus another $75 billion in transmission and distribution grid investment.

“That sounds like a big cost, which it definitely is, but it also translates into good-paying jobs in the clean energy and clean tech sectors,” Choi said. “Additionally, a decline in spending on fossil fuels like gasoline, diesel and natural gas will mean more energy savings for customers in the long run.”