EV incentives: Your state-by-state guide

Last updated on June 23, 2022 
Supply may be lacking, but state and territory governments are doing what they can to promote electric vehicle (EV) purchases. How do the incentives offered by your state compare?

Sales of EVs in this country tripled from 6,900 in 2020 to 20,665 in 2021 ( State of Electric Vehicles, March 2022, PDF, 6.5 MB) on the back of incentives by state and territory governments to support their uptake. Most offer an exemption on stamp duty or registration and some provide a modest rebate to reduce the upfront cost of purchasing an EV.

These incentives are attractive, but they haven’t been enough for EVs to make a large dent in the car market. Sales of EVs in Australia account for only 2 per cent of total sales (State of Electric Vehicles, March 2022) against figures of 15 per cent for the United Kingdom and 25 per cent Germany – and against a global average of 9 per cent.

A lack of impetus at a federal level to increase Australia’s appeal to global EV manufacturers partly explains this. Countries where EVs are bought in substantial numbers have government policies that focus on attracting a healthy supply of EV models and stimulating consumer demand. They also offer strong incentives to raise the consumer appeal of EVs.

At the start of May this year, the Federal Government and the Western Australian Government are the only jurisdictions in this country not to offer some form of incentive to accelerate EV uptake.

There are other issues too, the lack of EV choice in this country and the fact that many consumers face a wait of many months to receive their vehicle. Most Australian states and territories have implemented EV strategies to supercharge their appeal to consumers (State of Electric Vehicles, March 2022). How do the financial incentives on offer in your state or territory compare with others?
The ACT offers a full stamp duty exemption for EVs purchased for the first time, plus two years of free registration for new or used EVs. These incentives make the ACT the greatest discounter of upfront EV costs in the country, but it lags other jurisdictions in the rollout of charging infrastructure.
New South Wales has plans to phase out stamp duty on eligible EVs and has introduced a $3,000 subsidy for the first 25,000 EVs sold. Both will have a significant effect in reducing the upfront cost of an EV. New South Wales is among the states to lead investment in a state-wide charging network.
The Northern Territory has exceeded expectations when it comes to EV incentives. It has waived registration fees and introduced a stamp duty exemption. It has also invested in 80 workplace and public chargers and made contributions towards fast chargers at strategic locations across the Territory.
In March this year, Queensland announced a new $55 million EV package that includes a $3,000 incentive for 15,000 EVs under $58,000 and $10 million for new charging infrastructure. It builds on the state’s previous leadership in expanding the public charging infrastructure network.
South Australia has committed to 100 per cent zero emission passenger vehicle sales by 2040. It has introduced a package of financial incentives to help reduce the upfront cost of purchasing an EV, including $3,000 subsidies for 7,000 new battery electric vehicle (BEV) sales under $68,750.
Tasmania has introduced a stamp duty exemption for EVs and has set a government fleet target of 100 per cent zero emission vehicles (ZEV) by 2030. It has thus far only invested a modest amount into public charging infrastructure with $1.2 million invested over two rounds as part of its Charge Smart Program.
Victoria has committed to an ambitious target of 50 per cent new sales to be zero emission vehicles (ZEV) by 2030 and has introduced a $3,000 subsidy for the first 4,000 ZEVs sold (under the current $68,740 threshold) to help reduce upfront purchase costs. It has also made a strong commitment to support the electrification of its public transport fleet.
Western Australia currently offers no financial incentives to reduce the purchase cost of an EV, but it has invested in the rollout of public charging infrastructure across the state in an effort to reduce range anxiety. It has also begun efforts to improve customer awareness of EV technology.

Australia continues to be one of the few OECD countries not to have implemented fuel efficiency standards or put initiatives in place to encourage greater supply of EVs to this country. It means Australia will continue to be an unattractive market for global car manufacturers and that Australians may miss out on their choice of EV for the foreseeable future.

Decisions are being made at a state level to increase EV uptake, but Behyad Jafari, Chief Executive of the Electric Vehicle Council, says action needs to be taken at all levels of government if customers are to gain access to the EVs they want.

“All over the world governments are recognising that most consumers want an electric option when they consider their next vehicle and they’re doing what they can to make that option viable,” Jafari says.1

“It has been encouraging lately to see several state and territory governments introduce positive demand policies to incentivise the purchase of electric vehicles for consumers. But until the Federal Government comes to the party consumer choice will continue to be throttled.”

This article has been prepared by Allianz Australia Insurance Limited ABN 15 000 122 850 AFSL234708 (“Allianz”). In some cases, information has been provided to us by third parties and while that information is believed to be accurate and reliable, its accuracy is not guaranteed in any way.

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