• Oct 22nd 2009 at 3:59PM
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Tesla Roadster - Click above image for high-res gallery

We didn't believe it until we verified it with our own eyes – and amazingly it's true: Colorado is offering a $42,083 rebate on the 2009 Tesla Roadster until December 31st. Carry the one, move the decimal point... yep, that's a 38-percent discount on what must be the most desirable electric car currently for sale in the United States.

So, exactly how did this come about? Is the thin air up there distorting people's better judgment? Not exactly. The incentive actually applies to a slew of qualifying hybrid and electric vehicles and will be paid in the form of an income tax credit that's calculated by determining the difference in price of the alt-fuel car or truck as compared to a competitive gas-powered model. In the case of the Tesla Roadster, Colorado figures the EV costs a whopping $50K more than its competitive set... which we imagine might be the Lotus Elise.

Want to take advantage of the rebate but not interested in a fully-electric sportscar? Buyers can also get a $20K rebate on the 2009 Lexus LS 600h L or about three grand on either the new Honda Insight or Toyota Prius. But we urge you to buy the Tesla instead, because you could then get a loaded Ford Mustang GT with all the money you save just for irony's sake. See the complete list in PDF form here.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      "Buyers can also get a $20K rebate on the 2009 Lexus LS 600h L or about three grand on either the new Honda Insight or Toyota Prius."

      Great, 40K on Tesla and 20K on LS600 yet a pittance on cars that real people use.

      If find it very ironic that wealthy corporate executives (typically characterized as conservatives or Republicans) are criticized in this country for their excessive salary and spending yet nobody is outraged when it comes to the other class of wealthy (typically a liberal or Democrat) blowing vast sums of money on 100K+ "green" toys and sticking the taxpayers with part of the bill.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Still don't want it.

      * Reminder tonight the Porsche Factory is on Ultimate Factories on the National Geographic Channel.*
        • 5 Years Ago
        I was wondering if anyone else remembered... I've already got my timer set.
      • 5 Years Ago
      People must not have pulled up the form -
      1. It's a tax credit, not a rebate. This only lowers you tax liability, not the price you pay for the car.
      2. It's only for Colorado income tax, not federal income tax. Colorado tax is 4.63% of your federal liability. This will net you about $500 in Colorado tax savings if you are in the 25% federal tax bracket.
        • 5 Years Ago
        That isn't true. A tax credit is deducted from the taxes you owe (not from your taxable income). Meaning, if your federal tax liability was $100,000, you would calculate your taxes as $4630, and then you would deduct the tax credit. Of course there would be some left over, which can apparently be spread over the following 4 years. You would have to make quite a lot of money to get the full value of the credit though. Your taxable income would have to be about $200,000/year.
        • 5 Years Ago
        So it only makes sense if you make an incredible amount of money?

      • 5 Years Ago
      Can I buy a Tesla in Colorado for 42,000 less and sell it in Texas that gives zero incentives on Hybrids?
        • 5 Years Ago
        Texas gives you the "tax credit" by not charging you income tax in the first place.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Yes, you can. HOWEVER, this is a CO state income tax credit. If you are not paying CO state income tax, it will mean nothing to you. The $42k+ in tax credit carries forwards for 5 years if you do not make enough money to write all of that off in a single year.

        You 1) HAVE to register the car by December 31st, which means you have to order NOW to make that happen. 2) Have to drive/keep it registered in CO for at least 6 months. Yes, this means that if you make enough money to take advantage of this income tax credit, you SHOULD purchase a Roadster because you can drive it for 6 months then SELL IT AT A PROFIT. It is a GOOD BUSINESS DECISION to purchase a Roadster in CO right now!!!!!

        Why do you have to register by Dec 31st? Because on Jan 1st CO caps the credit to $6,000 maximum no matter what car you are buying.

        BTW -- $42,xxx is the credit but if you can prove to the state of CO that your Roadster purchase causes a car 10 years or older to leave the CO roads (so you sell it out of state or junk it), they ADD another $6,000 to the credit! :-)

        OKLAHOMA HAS A LARGER TAX CREDIT THAN THE CO ONE!!!! It's 50% of the price. YES, 50% state income tax credit.

        • 5 Years Ago

        "Knowledge is power, if you know the right person."
      • 5 Years Ago
      if anyones interested in working online you might want to try this
      • 5 Years Ago
      What a waste. Why should any car costing over $100K have a tax credit?
      • 5 Years Ago
      BRILLIANT - raise taxes across the board (Taxorado is taking too much as it is) - provide tax credits for a few wealthy - save the planet for the rich - tax the middle income and poorer folks out of Colorado - i pay enough tax in Colo already - why am i subsidizing a few wealthy (most likely democrat politicians - cause that is all thats left in Co politics) elitists?? maybe Colorado could vote to require Al (our pal) Gore to provide the difference from the few billion $$ he has made from his phoney science carbon credits.
      • 5 Years Ago
      If they give this rebate for the Fisker Karma next year, I will buy one. Seriously. That would bring the price down to the $55k range.
      • 5 Years Ago
      A $20k rebate on that joke of a hybrid (The LS600h?) that's criminally stupid.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I test drove a preproduction LS600h prototype a few years ago.

        Fantastic car. Pulls like a V12.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Is pulling like a V12 why you buy a hybrid? Seriously?
      • 5 Years Ago
      Crap, even with that rebate, I still can't afford one! =(

        • 5 Years Ago
        I kant afford one either either but as the saying goes and it still holds true, 'The rich get richer'!
        • 5 Years Ago
        Well gosh, thanks for sharing that you two!
      • 5 Years Ago
      I can see a lot of people starting to imagine how to exploit some loopholes...!?!?!?

      • 5 Years Ago
      This is why there need to be price caps on credits like this. Now the taxpayers of Colorado are subsidizing the wealthy who decide to buy pricey alt-fuel toys. It's nonsensical at best and wasteful at the worst. Hopefully the legislators of the state decide to put a cap on the price of car.
        • 5 Years Ago
        They could vote some politicians out of their offices when the next state elections come around.
        • 5 Years Ago

        The Democrats go on about abortion? That's news to me. I think the right-to-life crowd is much more vocal (and at time militant) in their opposition to choice than the left is about their support.
        • 5 Years Ago
        You cant vote them out of office.
        The Republicans always turn the election into a debate about guns, gays, fear, and god and the Democrats turn it into a debate about health care, freedom, abortion, and trade issues.

        Fiscal responsibility is always lost in the middle.
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