It’s going to cost more to buy electric cars in California.

The state has run out of the $5,000 rebates it was giving people who purchased all-electric vehicles such as the Nissan Leaf and Tesla Roadster.

That’s on top of a price increase for the Nissan Leaf. The automaker said this week that it would raise the price of the base model when the 2012 cars come out this fall by $2,420 to $36,050, including destination charge. The higher-trim-level Leaf SL will go up $3,530 to $38,100, including destination charge.

But there could be some relief for those who were on the waiting list for the $5,000 rebate. The state’s Air Resources Board on Thursday will consider a recommendation to provide rebates of $2,500 to about 500 people who have already purchased cars and who were on the waiting list.

The vote would provide additional funds for about 5,500 rebates — also $2,500 — for electric cars and some other types of zero-emission vehicles such as the hydrogen vehicles that some automakers offer through experimental lease programs, said Mary Fricke, spokeswoman for the Air Resources Board.

None of this affects the $7,500 federal tax credit used to spur sales of electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids, such as the Chevrolet Volt. The Volt doesn’t qualify for the state rebate, though emission-control upgrades to the vehicles expected sometime next year could put it on the list.

The rebates are intended to promote the production and use of zero-emission vehicles, known as ZEVs, which include electric, plug-in hybrid electric and fuel-cell vehicles.

“The government is saying that if you are an early adopter, be prepared to pay for it,” said Jesse Toprak, an analyst at auto information website TrueCar. He said there’s enough demand for electric vehicles to absorb some price increases and shrinking rebates, at least for the next year or so.

It’s not a surprise that the California rebates are shrinking,

Article source: http://feeds.stateline.org/~r/StatelineorgRss-Transportation/~3/3_ppJ4LhfFM/la-fi-autos-electric-prices-20110721,0,1179660.story