Know the difference between a tax rebate and a tax credit? They may seem like the same thing – paying fewer taxes – but there's a big difference. A credit is something you get back when you file your taxes and a rebate, in this case an instant cash rebate, is money you'd get back when you buy the item. A new electric car, for example.

Coda Automotive's Kara Saltness has written a post describing how a shift in the law from a credit to a rebate would get more electric cars into people's driveways. There is, of course, a big federal tax credit – worth up to $7,500 – for plug-in vehicles, but that isn't as good as an instant cash rebate. Coda has done consumer insights research and analysis to prove that an instant cash rebate paid to the dealer (and buyer) at the time of sale "would nearly triple demand for all electric cars in 2010-2011," Saltness says. Having a rebate, Saltness told AutoblogGreen:
would greatly reduce the upfront cost of electric vehicles and help to spur market demand and adoption. For Coda specifically, this would allow us to price our car in the low $30,000 or below range, which we believe is a price point that would greatly broaden the market for electric vehicles.
Everyone buying that?

[Source: Coda Automotive]

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