Recently, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) was inviting consumers to share comments on the electric vehicles’ tax credit qualifications. Various Tesla and other electric vehicle supporters have been vocal about the qualification for EV tax credits. Elon Musk replied that the EV tax credits were “messed up”. Later he retweeted a Teslarati article, asking people to comment on this matter.
Some variants of the Tesla Model Y and the Ford Mustang Mach-E will not receive any incentives from the IRA at all, yet some vehicles that use fossil fuels will. Those vehicles are classified as electric vehicles because they are plug-in hybrid EVs. The IRS gives specific instructions on how to submit the comments. Comments can be submitted by mail or email. For those submitting by email, you need to include OMB Control No. 1545-2137 in the subject line and send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please comment on this matter https://t.co/Oip43FcVo2
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 4, 2023
In December, the IRS announced the vehicles that qualified for the 2023 EV tax credit. Some of these vehicles include plug-in hybrid EVs that use gas and batteries. Although there were several Tesla Model Ys on the list, the only ones that qualified as an SUV with an $80,000 MSRP limit were the seven-seat varieties.
Not eligible vehicles
One of the most discussed topics over EV tax credit is whether Tesla vehicles are eligible. But as IRS released a 2023 list of vehicles that qualify for the new $7,500 incentive. And while Tesla’s popular SUV is on it, the most common five-seater versions won’t be eligible. According to EPA classifications, all versions of the Tesla Model Y are supposed to be under the “small SUV” category. But it would seem the IRS is treating five-seater and seven-seater models differently for tax eligibility, the former being treated as a car and the latter as an SUV.
As a result, the five-seater Model Y’s MSRP price cap for tax credit eligibility becomes $55,000, the same category that includes smaller EVs like the compact hatchback Chevy Bolt. And since the Model Y Long Range starts at $65,990, that makes it not currently eligible for the $7,500 credit.
The car on the left has a gas engine and gets 20 MPG. It has 21 miles of electric range. It gets a $7,500 EV Tax Credit.
The car on the right is ELECTRIC ONLY and gets 113 MPEe. It has 330 miles of range.
IT DOES NOT GET A $7,500 EV TAX CREDIT. pic.twitter.com/lqSXObCoUi
— Farzad Mesbahi (@farzyness) January 1, 2023
The IRS does use weight to determine if a truck or SUV is eligible for certain business deductions, but that isn’t applying here. If the IRS were to use those weight specifications for the clean vehicle tax incentive eligibility, then many cars (including Model Y) would not reach the 6,000 gross vehicle weight rating to be classed as an SUV. Tesla specifies the Model Y has a curb weight of about 4,403 pounds.