Most people will agree that buying any new car can be a long and frustrating process. But what if you're buying an electric vehicle (EV)? By being flexible and planning ahead, there's no reason why it can't be relatively quick and easy.

5 ways to speed up the EV buying process

1. Cash, finance or lease?

Decide how you want to pay for your EV. If you're financing or leasing, use the numbers on the manufacturer's website to do some rough calculations ahead of visiting the dealership. Don't forget to subtract your average monthly maintenance and gas costs for your current gas-powered vehicle from the monthly EV cost (including tax) for a ballpark figure of what your new EV might cost overall. Depending on your current gas costs, you might find you can save quite a lot – or be able to afford a more expensive vehicle than you thought.

2. Find an EV-friendly dealership

As mentioned on our Test Drive page, call around to find a dealership for your chosen manufacturer with an EV enthusiast on the sales team who can properly advise you – even if this means travelling further.

3. Be flexible on options / colour

EVs are in huge demand at the moment, so a very specific vehicle might take time to locate. If you're prepared to wait, that's fine. But if you need your EV right away, you might need to be flexible about the details.

4. Get your OK application ready to go

You may have seen EVs displaying a white OK decal. EVs displaying this decal can travel in the HOV lane with just one passenger unless otherwise indicated. So while you're waiting for the dealer to find your ideal EV, get your OK decal application ready so you can submit it the moment your new car arrives.

5. Get a home charger fitted

Yes, it sounds obvious, but if you're permitted to install a home charger, why not get it done before your vehicle arrives so that you can charge up right away? There are also rebates available for chargers. Find out more about the EV charger rebate program.

Save up to $8,000 with EV rebates

B.C. residents, businesses, non-profit organizations and local government organizations who purchase or lease qualifying new vehicles are currently eligible for 2 rebates: up to $3,000 from the Government of B.C. and up to $5,000 from the federal government. These are applied directly to the pre-tax sticker price by the dealership.

Find out more about EV rebates and incentives in B.C.

In addition to these, you may be eligible for SCRAP-IT, a program offered in B.C. that offers incentives to use towards the cost of a new EV and other low-carbon forms of transportation when you scrap your existing gas-powered vehicle. The incentives apply to purchases of both new and EVs.

All 2019 SCRAP-IT incentives were allocated, but there may be more available this year.

Visit SCRAP-IT for full program details and a list of dealers that have specific vehicles available with incentives.

Save up to $700 with a home EV charger incentive

You can apply for a rebate of up to $700 towards the purchase and installation of your home or workplace EV charging station.

Find out more about the EV charger rebate program.

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