Phoenix Could Offer Public Buying Program For Electric Cars

Published: Monday, May 22, 2017 - 5:00am
Updated: Monday, November 6, 2017 - 12:10pm

(Photo by Christina Estes - KJZZ)
Phoenix Sustainability Officer Mark Hartman pitches a public buying program for electric vehicles at a city meeting.

Many shoppers embrace buying in bulk at big box stores and through warehouse clubs. Now, the city of Phoenix is using the concept to create a car-buying program.

It’s a public buying program for electric vehicles. Phoenix has put out a call for dealers to offer limited-time bulk purchase discounts on electric cars with special pricing available to businesses and individuals. The city’s sustainability officer, Mark Hartman, says it’s modeled after a program developed in Boulder County, Colorado, that provided an $8,000 discount per car. 

“They only had one manufacturer apply, so it was just a Nissan for them,” he said. “And with that one manufacturer, they saw their sales over that three-month period go four times multiple.” 

According to a city document, sales of the Nissan LEAF grew from approximately 15 vehicles per month to over 60 during the three-month program. During a city meeting, Hartman would not estimate how many vehicles might be sold in Phoenix but suggested it would be higher due to the region’s population being more than 10 times that of Boulder County.

Phoenix would partner with utilities and maybe other cities to promote the program, but all sales and leasing contracts would be between dealers and buyers. The program could launch as soon as August. See the city’s request for proposals here.

Phoenix wants to accelerate the electric vehicle market to improve air quality and lower the community’s carbon footprint. 

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