Plug It In: The Deal America Is Missing Out On

A recent study shows that a whopping 95% of Americans are unfamiliar with any & all financial incentives associated with electric cars. Said study, conducted by two Indiana University researchers, surveyed more than 2,000 drivers in 21 of the nation’s largest cities. Nearly all respondents answered that they were unaware of the monetary incentives the government has in place for trading a gas guzzler in for an electric vehicle.

This is likely one of the bigger reasons why sales of electric cars have yet to take off in the United States. Only a tiny fraction of new vehicles sold in the US this year will be rechargeable. Some estimates display dismal numbers, predicting that of the 15.5 million vehicles sold in 2013, only 50,000 will be electric.

Consumers simply aren’t informed about the federal $7,500 tax credit available. The study also found that 3 out of 4 Americans were uninformed about the lower costs associated with both the fuel and maintenance of electric vehicles, as compared to their gasoline counterpoints.

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Tesla Outperforming Luxury Brands in Wealthy West Coast Communities!

One of the Senior Analysts at, Jessica Caldwell, recently played an EV hunch with quite shocking success.  Forbes had recently listed the wealthiest zip codes in the nation, most of which are either in California or New York, and she decided to cross-reference sales data with those zip codes to see how Teslas were selling in those areas.

The results were nothing short of staggering. In the 25 wealthiest zip codes in California, where median home prices range from $2.5 to $6.6 MILLION, Tesla enjoys a market share of 1.4% to 15.4%!  In eight of the top 25 wealthiest zip codes in America, not just California, the Tesla Model S is the most popular vehicle, outselling luxury brands like Mercedes and Audi.

Will There Be a “Trickle-Down” Effect to the Average Consumer?

Obviously, what the wealthiest people in America buy is not typically what the average consumer can afford. However, the Tesla Model S, while certainly not “cheap” at about $120,000, is within reach of many luxury car buyers.  The people who already buy full-size Mercedes and BMW’s and Porsches.  Plus, as Tesla gains traction with its premium models, we have to wonder if they will introduce a mass-market model that is within reach of a greater segment of customers.  They seem to be preparing for it, what with the expansion of their Supercharger Network, even right here to Seattle–a serious consideration if you’re thinking of financing one of these beauties. One thing is beyond a doubt:  consumers tend to emulate the wealthy trendsetters and celebrities, and according to these numbers, that’s exactly who is buying the Tesla Model S–at least here on the “Left Coast.”