5 June 2021

Probing the polls: ChooseCBR vouchers and electric vehicle choices

| Genevieve Jacobs
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Mitsubishi electric vehicle

The ACT Government is promising two years of free registration for zero-emissions vehicles. Photo: Michelle Kroll.

Voters are evenly split on the ChooseCBR vouchers after the ACT Government announced an additional $2 million for the scheme.

The model was trialled last year and copped its fair share of criticism, and this time around, some argued that Canberra’s economy is now well past its pandemic problems.

Jack Lloyd said: “It’s free money, so if I don’t it’s really my own fault.” But russianafroman disagreed, writing: “Nup let people spend their money how they want, including donating their money to charity, don’t convert money to vouchers, put the 2 million into things that actually matter.”

We asked, Will you be using the ChooseCBR vouchers? A total of 610 readers voted and the votes were split down the middle.

Your choices were to vote: No, the economy is fine, and the money is better spent elsewhere. This received 50 per cent of the total, or 306 votes. Alternatively, you could vote Yes, it’s a sensible way to help small business and people doing it tough. This also received 50 per cent of the total.

This week, we’re wondering whether you are ready to buy an electric vehicle.

The ACT Government has announced two years’ free registration for new and used electric vehicles acquired after 24 May, in addition to new EVs being exempt from stamp duty. Columnist James Coleman argues that there’s never been a better time to think about ditching your petrol or diesel drive. Combined, the incentives will take about 5 per cent off the cost of an EV.

READ ALSO The EVs you can buy right now and what they’ll cost you

But many readers were less than convinced this was a good idea.

Angus Fung wrote: “Ev car’s battery can be dead if no charging station is provided in the city.”

Martin Stanton said: “It doesn’t matter to me how good these cars are, nor how far they get on a charge. I’ll never afford one on my wage, new or even worse, used. Low income earner getting close to my last days of work. The fuel I use will be the last thing on my mind, there’ll be far more important things to find money for!!”

But Woody Brenden is a fan, writing: “I just got a new Tesla Model 3 after driving a diesel for 10 years. Cannot even begin to describe how much better the experience is. I did my first road trip to the South Coast yesterday and it was so much fun to drive. So much for Scotty from marketing claiming that EVs were gonna cause the end of the weekend.”

Our question this week is:

Will you buy an electric vehicle?

View Results

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A Nonny Mouse10:42 pm 06 Jun 21

The question doesn’t cover all options. There was no option to say ‘I already have an electric car that I don’t anticipate replacing for a long time, so, no, I won’t be buying an electric car any time soon and I certainly won’t be buying a fossil fuel car ever again.’.

Yep. That’s my answer too!

The $15,000 offered by the ACT Government is a zero interest loan and not cash. It does not reduce the price of the car but rather the cost of ownership, considering cars are often purchased with some form of credit. The most commonly sold electric car is the Nissan Leaf for $61,000 (article in The RiotACT this week). The governments registrations charges are free for two years, but that does not include insurance. Insurance is expensive (cost of ownership) than registration. If you do not drive much, capital, insurance and maintenance costs are most of what any car costs. The cost of fuel is the biggest difference. Will that be enough?

Capital Retro8:56 am 08 Jun 21

The “fuel” for EVs may be cheaper than petrol but the battery will clap out within 10 years so a replacement battery then will cost more than the car is worth. So, even if your new EV sits in the garage the depletion of the battery will cost you about $2,000 a year.

I have 21 year old petrol powered vehicle which has done 320,000km and still as good as new with no major, costly replacement of parts.

I doesn’t get any better than that.

Capital Retro,
Once again showing you aren’t really paying attention to the market or trends.
Firstly, I have no idea where you are pulling your figures for depreciation from, looks like you’re just making them up.

Secondly, what do you think the cost of replacement batteries will be in 10 years? Hint, far, far less than they are now. Take a look at the cost trends per kWhr over recent years, they’re only going to go lower as the technology advances and new types of batteries emerge.


Also, your statement about the maintenance costs of your petrol powered vehicle made me laugh out loud. You clearly don’t keep very good records if it’s miraculously required no maintenance or new parts in that 20 years. Petrol powered vehicles are inherently more complicated than EVs. Various fluids, wires, plugs, timing belts, brakes etc are all significantly more costly for ICE vehicles or aren’t needed for EV’s. Your one example of the battery is almost the only thing that’s worse and as above, the costs are reducing significantly every year.

I honestly think you would still be riding a horse if you were around before Cars existed.

“Why would I want a car with all that petrol and maintenance costs, my horse just eats hay”

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