An association suspects that some of the 685 Quebecers who received Quebec’s $7,000 subsidy several times over to buy an electric vehicle killed themselves when they later resold it in Ontario.
“We have been informed of cases of Ontarians making offers to Quebecers at charging stations. I am surprised that the figure of 685 is so low,” acknowledges George Iny, president of the Association for the Protection of Drivers (APA). .
In Quebec, the Roulez vert program allows buyers of an electric vehicle to receive up to $7,000 towards the purchase of a new 100% electric car or between $5,000 and $2,500 for a plug-in hybrid vehicle.
You can also have $7,000 for a hydrogen vehicle, $2,000 for an electric motorcycle, or $500 for an electric scooter.
The newspaper learned that over five years, between 2019 and 31 October 2023, more than 685 people ($9.1 million) have benefited on various occasions from purchase subsidies for a total of 149,516 people ($983.2 million) that benefited from the program.
“Very little crime”
This rather low figure leads Ian P. Sam Yue Chi, director general of the Corporation des Concessionaires Automobiles du Québec (CCAQ), to say that these cases are “anecdotal”.
“Where there is a problem, but a minor one, is when customers buy multiple electric vehicles with the goal of quickly reselling them,” he said.
“The good news is that Quebec can recover these funds if the vehicle is sold less than 12 months after its purchase,” recalls Ian P. Sam Yue Chi. “There is very little crime,” he stresses.
“If some people turn around after taking advantage of the subsidy to sell it outside of Quebec, I have a problem with that,” observes Daniel Breton, CEO of Electric Mobility Canada (MEC).
Less so now
At the Association of Electric Vehicles of Quebec (AVÉQ), its founder and spokesman, Simon-Pierre Rioux, notes that this phenomenon has faded over the past year due to the market calming down after overheating.
“People have been approached to buy their vehicle because there was oversupply in Ontario, but the cars are much more available, the prices have come down, so there’s no interest in reselling there anymore,” he analyzed .
When we ask the Ministry of the Environment, Combating Climate Change, Wildlife and Parks (MELCCFP) whether investigations have been opened to investigate the illegal resale of cars, we are told that the subsidy will often go to people who change cars or have more than one
“An electric vehicle can only receive financial assistance from the program once, as it is linked to the vehicle identification number (VIN). According to our data, no vehicle with the same VIN has been the subject of two financial aids”, concludes its spokesperson Frédéric Fournier.
There are more than 200,000 electric vehicles on our roads, but the Quebec government hopes to reach 2 million within seven years.