With availability of all-electric vehicles like the 2011 Nissan LEAF in the state not expected until sometime in 2011, consumers may be interested in current New Jersey incentives and tax credits for hybrid and electric cars.

According to information from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Alternative Fuels and Advanced Vehicle Data Center, New Jersey state incentives only apply to zero emission vehicles (ZEVs). And those incentives are in the form of a state sales and use tax exemption for ZEVs.

The New Jersey ZEV tax exemption does not apply to partial zero emission vehicles (PZEVs), including hybrid electric vehicles such as the Toyota Prius and Honda Civic Hybrid.

ZEVs are defined as those vehicles certified as such by the California Air Resources Board (CARB). Some of the motor vehicles that qualify for ZEV tax exemption, according to the State of New Jersey Department of the Treasury (see the site for the full list) include:

  • 2011 Mercedes-Benz Fuel Cell
  • 2011 Nissan LEAF
  • 2011 Smart ForTwo Cabriolet, 2011 Smart ForTwo ED Coupe
  • 2010 Honda FCX Clarity

HOV Lane Exemption

The New Jersey Turnpike Authority allows hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) and alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs) to travel in the HOV lanes on the New Jersey Turnpike. AFVs that are permitted to use the HOV lanes include those operating on electricity, methanol, natural gas, liquified petroleum gas, hydrogen, coal-derived liquid fuels, or fuels derived from biological materials. In addition, any other federally-approved AFVs are also permitted to use the New Jersey Turnpike HOV lanes.

Reduced Alternative Fuels Tax

New Jersey also provides a reduced tax on the purchase alternative fuels used to operate a motor vehicle. The tax paid upon the sale and use of liquid petroleum gas (LPG) and compressed natural gas (CNG) is equal to half the sales tax paid upon the use or use of gasoline and diesel fuel.

As more ZEV and PZEV vehicles become available in coming years, consumers may expect to see more New Jersey incentives and tax credits for hybrid and electric cars.

Be sure to also see if the vehicles you’re considering can qualify for a federal tax credit, deduction, or rebate.  Here’s  more info on new car tax credit, hybrid car tax credit, and electric car tax credit from the federal government.  Also, make sure to check out the list of year-end new car deals, new car lease deals, and certified used car deals being offered by the car makers.  Given the year-end and car manufacturers’ desire to sell more cars, there’s great deals to be had if you do your homework and are aware of all the incentives, discounts, rebates you can qualify for.  Here’s some tips on year-end car buying strategy.

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