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Legislation that includes tax credits for plug-in electric vehicles has passed the Senate. Now the House gets a chance to look things over and put it to a vote. The tax credits allow buyers of PHEVs to receive a credit as high as $7,500 and as low as $2,500 depending on the capacity of the vehicle's battery. Toyota had raised concerns that the bill focused solely on battery capacity, as its currently announced hybrid plans do not include anything that would approach the maximum credit. In fact, the Chevy Volt sits alone as the only product that has enough battery capacity for the top tier. Chrysler's recently shown electric vehicles would theoretically qualify if they ever see the light of day.

Once 250,000 qualifying PHEVs are sold, the credits begin to get smaller until they go away completely. At this point, the legislation -- and the vehicles -- have a long way to go before anybody could actually purchasing a qualifying car, but the framework is now in place.

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[Source: Automotive News - sub. req'd]