CARB is considering San Diego for a pilot program for the new rebate before the end of the year, as that metropolitan area offers a good cross section of both vehicle makers and income levels among prospective buyers. CARB hasn't released further details about a program that would be longer term or in other parts of the state.
The proposed rebate would dovetail with the California's ongoing efforts to get lower-income residents to buy plug-in vehicles. Current programs require prospective buyers to prequalify by verifying their income levels through the Center for Sustainable Energy (CSE), so a point-of-sale rebate would merely be an extension of that effort.
As it is, the Golden State has made solid progress towards its zero-emission vehicles (ZEV) goals. Earlier this month, the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) released a report estimating that the state's zero-emissions vehicle sales in 2016 were almost half of what would be needed to reach the state's mandate for 2025. ZEV sales accounted for about one in 30 new vehicles purchased in California last year and jumped 18 percent in 2016.