Batteries Not Included: Solutions Series

No one can say where the road ahead will take Canada, but here’s a safe bet: it’s going to have a lot more electric cars on it. That’s especially true in B.C., one of Canada’s electric vehicle leaders, and yet the situation is far from perfect for would-be buyers on the West Coast. Not only is supply struggling to meet demand, British Columbians often can’t find EVs to test drive. Others are left waiting months to get their hands on a new model, while many dealerships seem unaware of incentive programs available to EV buyers. In June and July, Clean Energy Canada called all 322 dealerships in B.C. that qualify for the province’s EV rebate program and found that only 40% of them have electric cars on their lots available to purchase. Most said the wait time to get an electric car would be three months to a year—with some citing wait times of up to 18 months. Fewer than one in five of them could refer us to an alternative dealership with available EVs. The good news is this problem has a policy solution.