In late-2017, Congress passed a new tax bill that undercuts tax credits aimed at making electric vehicles more affordable. This new tax structure makes significant sliding-scale incentive cuts starting in 2019, and some Tesla owners worry they may miss out on their full tax credits due to slower-than-expected production times. Tesla CEO Elon Musk is telling owners to chill because the company has its checkbook ready to cover any cuts.
According to a report from Reuters, the new tax bill limits the full $7,500 federal tax credit to the first 200,000 vehicles an automaker sells. After that, the credit reduces by 50 percent every six months until it is phased out.
As one of the top sellers of electric vehicles, Tesla is well over this 200,000-unit threshold, so any buyer who receives their Tesla model after Jan. 1, 2019, will receive just a $3,750 tax credit. Tesla ensured buyers who ordered their vehicles by Oct. 15, 2018, would take delivery before the credit reduction. With the year winding down and tons of undelivered vehicles, some buyers are questioning this commitment.
When pressed on Twitter about how Tesla will handle any vehicles not delivered on time, Musk replied, “If Tesla committed delivery & customer made good faith efforts to receive before year end, Tesla will cover the tax credit difference.”
So, if you ordered your Tesla by the Oct. 15, 2018 cutoff date and miss the Jan. 1, 2019 mark for your full tax credit, you can rest assured you’ll get the other half of the credit from Tesla itself.