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How much is Norway paying to promote electric cars?

Norway is one of the most electric car-friendly countries on the planet, Ingram writes. But how much is Norway’s pro-electric car stance actually costing the country – and can any of the country’s techniques really be used elsewhere?

Are Paulsrud disconnects his electric car from a free recharging station in Oslo. Norway’s various subsidies for electric vehicles amount to as much as $8,200 per car every single year, Ingram writes.

With electric cars taking up 3 percent of the market for new car sales in a country of only five million people, Norway is one of the most electric car-friendly countries on the planet.
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Geographically small enough to minimize range concerns and with huge financial incentives for going electric, that perhaps isn’t surprising.

But how much is Norway’s pro-electric car stance actually costing the country–and can any of the country’s techniques really be used elsewhere?

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Probably not, concludes Reuters. That’s not to say that the market for electric cars won’t grow elsewhere, but it might have to do so more organically than the heavily incentivized methods used by Norway.

$8,200 in savings per year

The country’s various subsidies for electric vehiclesamount to as much as $8,200 per car–every single year.

That’s partly down to Norway’s heavy taxation, which sees the prices of regular cars pushed significantly higher than they are elsewhere. A basic Volkswagen Golf, that costs the equivalent of $24,600 in the United Kingdom, can cost $42,000 in Norway.

While a Nissan Leaf is still cheaper in the UK than it is in Norway, at $35,500, in comparison to that same VW Golf, the price looks much more attractive–$42,500.

You can bet Nissan Leafs would sell quicker in the U.S. if they cost only $500 more than an equivalent gasoline car, that’s for sure.

The tax breaks on purchase amount to around $1,400 per year over a car’s lifetime, according to a study by Statistics Norway analyst Bjart Holtsmark. To this, the average driver can add $1,400 in road toll savings, free parking worth $5,000 and avoid other charges of around $400. All those figures are per year savings.

In addition, electric car drivers can save time as well as money–as they’re allowed to use the country’s bus lanes, denied to normal traffic.

These incentives will run until 2017, when the scheme will be reviewed.
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