Clean Vehicle Rebate Project

This page last updated December 30, 2015

The Air Resources Board (ARB) Clean Vehicle Rebate Project (CVRP) is designed to promote the purchase of battery electric, plug-in hybrid electric, and fuel cell vehicles.  Rebates of up to $5,000 per light-duty vehicle are available for individuals, nonprofits, government entities, and business owners who purchase or lease an eligible vehicle. For current rebate statistics, please visit the Center for Sustainable Energy's (CSE)  CVRP Rebate Statistics Webpage.

For Fiscal Year 2015-16, the California Energy Commission (Energy Commission) approved the transfer of $5 million to CVRP to augment funding freeway capable ZEVs certified for four or more passengers.

To apply for a rebate, check the status of your rebate, or to get more information regarding CVRP, please visit CSE's CVRP website at or call 866-984-2532.

The Air Resources Board approved the Fiscal Year 2015-16  Low Carbon Transportation Investments and AQIP Funding Plan in late June 2015, which included several changes to the Clean Vehicle Rebate Project (CVRP):

  • Income Cap for higher-income consumers
  • Increased rebate levels for low- and moderate-income consumers 

Income Cap for Higher-Income Consumers
The income cap for higher-income consumers is set at the same income thresholds established in Proposition 30, a ballot initiative approved by California voters in 2012.  Consumers will not be eligible for CVRP rebates if their gross annual incomes are above the following thresholds:

  • $250,000 for single filers
  • $340,000 for head-of-household filers
  • $500,000 for joint filers

The income cap applies to all eligible vehicle types except fuel-cell electric vehicles.

For the purposes of CVRP, gross annual income is determined by the amount reported on the applicant’s federal tax return:

  • On IRS Form 1040: Line 22
  • On IRS Form 1040A: Line 15
  • On IRS Form 1040EZ: Line 4

Increased Rebate Levels for Low- and Moderate-Income Consumers
Rebate amounts will be increased by $1,500 per rebate for consumers with household incomes less than or equal to 300 percent of the federal poverty level.  Increased rebate amounts are available for fuel-cell electric vehicles, battery electric vehicles, and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles.  For the purposes of CVRP, a household includes all family members or other unrelated persons, including the rebate applicant, who reside together and share common living expenses.  For the purposes of CVRP, gross annual household income includes that of the applicant and all other individuals in the household, ages 17 years and older, regardless of whether or not they are related to the rebate applicant.  Gross income includes, but is not limited to the following:

Wages, unemployment, workers' compensation, Social Security, Supplemental Security Income, public assistance, veterans' payments, survivor benefits, pension or retirement income, interest, dividends, rents, royalties, income from estates, trusts, educational assistance, alimony, child support, assistance from outside the household, and other miscellaneous sources.

Income Verification
A subset of applicants will have their income verified.  Applicants selected for income verification must submit IRS Form 4506-T, Request for Transcript of Tax Return.  Alternate proof of income such as recent tax returns may be submitted as approved by the project administrator.  Consumers who apply for an increased rebate may be required to submit additional documentation to provide complete details on household size and income.  Documentation confirming qualification in selected low- and moderate-income assistance programs may also be accepted as proof of income for applicants applying for an increased rebate.

Effective Date
The income eligibility changes will apply to rebate applications for vehicles purchased or leased on or after the implementation date.  For example, if the implementation date were March 15, a consumer who purchases or leases a vehicle on March 25 would be subject to the income cap and would potentially be eligible for an increased rebate.  A consumer who purchased or leased a vehicle on February 28 would not be subject to the income cap and would not be eligible for an increased rebate.

Implementation Date
Implementation of the income eligibility changes is anticipated in mid-March 2016.  The implementation date will be announced at least two weeks prior on the ARB and CVRP websites and through a press release.  CVRP will continue to operate without income eligibility changes until the implementation date.

Further details regarding specific income limit changes can be found in the approved funding plan located at (see Chapter 3, page 26).

Implementation Manual


Project Solicitation

CVRP Work Group Meetings

  • For more information on CVRP Work Group Meetings and other AQIP and Low Carbon Transportation meetings, please visit our Workshops/Meetings webpage.