- Pennsylvania has over 20,000 EVs registered as of 2022, despite being known for its slow adoption of EVs.
- The state has just under 1,000 charging stations, with an average of one to four chargers per municipality.
- Pennsylvania currently lacks strong incentives and support for EV ownership, but there is potential for improvement in the future.
- Tesla remains a popular brand in Pennsylvania due to its brand recognition, performance, and range.
The most popular EVs in Pennsylvania are rather typical if you’re familiar with the market. The state itself isn’t particularly known for being very EV-friendly. However, registrations are on the rise, with over 20,000 EVs residing in the state as of 2022.
With this in mind, it is important to take a closer look at the available infrastructure, popular choices, and what EV owners in Pennsylvania can expect. If you’re a PA resident and you’re looking to make the swap, these choices might help guide your next purchase.
EVs are getting more and more popular with each passing year, so it is important to see what users value most in a vehicle.
EV Infrastructure in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania as a whole has been rather slow to adopt EVs. At the time of this writing, just under 1,000 charging stations are within the state. For most counties, this amounts to roughly one to four chargers on average for the entire municipality.
This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, as Pennsylvania also has a much lower rate of adoption for EVs. The average EV owner should have options when it comes to charging, despite the somewhat poor private and public infrastructure.
Most EV owners will likely be charging at home, but it can be difficult to plan trips and the like without safe and reliable methods of charging. This doesn’t come as much of a shock, as Pennsylvania only accounts for around 2% of total EV ownership in the entire country, sadl.y
What to Expect with EV Ownership in Pennsylvania
The Electrification Coalition centered out of Pennsylvania is trying to make it even easier for potential owners to purchase their first vehicle. Currently, the poor infrastructural support and the lower rates of adoption mean you won’t be seeing too many like-minded users out there.
Of course, for potential owners, you’re still subject to the federal tax rebate program. This is good for any American-made EV that is purchased new. The state itself isn’t running incentive programs, however. This comes in stark contrast to stellar support from states like California.
There is a great amount of potential for Pennsylvania to electrify city fleets and make ownership even easier for potential users. Currently, however, there is little to motivate the average consumer to purchase an EV.
Gas stations are far more common across the state, even with expanded federal funding to provide charging stations.
The Most Popular EVs in Pennsylvania
Despite the lack of overt support from the state, there are quite a few familiar vehicles that have caught on in Pennsylvania. If you’re an avid EV enthusiast, you probably are very familiar with the seven models that have caught public interest.
Some of these vehicles are no longer in active production but still remain rather popular on the second-hand market.
Tesla Model S
The Tesla Model S has the distinction of being the first commercially viable EV available for wide purchase. It is far more akin to a luxury vehicle than your standard EV, but it has a stellar reputation.
The Model S remains a popular EV in Pennsylvania simply due to the plentiful usable models on the second-hand market, along with Tesla’s extended range and plush bonus features. New purchasers can still qualify for a greatly reduced tax credit when purchasing the Model S.
Tesla remains one of the few brands that is consistently found across most American states where EVs are being purchased. Brand recognition, performance, and range have gone a long way to bolster the public perception of this particular EV.
If not for Tesla, the Nissan LEAF could very well be the most popular EV in the United States. The LEAF is certainly one of the most popular EVs in Pennsylvania, let alone the rest of the country.
It isn’t hard to see why, either. Users get a reliable, eco-friendly vehicle and the overall cost is about the same as buying any other car.
Now, the LEAF has plenty of options to find on the second-hand market, but do be aware earlier models had issues with the battery getting too hot. Newer models don’t have such issues, so you should be safe to buy currently.
If buying used, make sure to check with your local Nissan dealership for the overall health of the battery. The LEAF is still a perfectly fine EV and makes for a great daily driver if you’re looking for an entry-level electric vehicle.
Chevrolet Bolt EV
The Chevy Bolt EV has made quite a splash since its debut. Very few EVs are available new from the factory for under $30,000. This has helped to pave the way for it to be one of the most popular EVs in Pennsylvania, and it is quite popular across the rest of the country.
The Chevy Bolt EV lacks the bells and whistles you might expect of a brand like Tesla. What users get, however, is a reliable daily driver with a fairly decent overall range. It might not have some of the more specialized technology like automated driving, but you get a full complement of safety features.
The low price gets even lower since Chevrolet still has plentiful tax rebates remaining from the federal government. New purchasers could easily get the Bolt for quite a bit below MSRP, provided they’re purchasing new.
Tesla Model 3
The Tesla Model 3 is the EV of choice for most Americans and routinely tops sales charts. Tesla’s Model 3 hits that sweet spot of affordability and top performance, which naturally makes it one of the most popular EVs in Pennsylvania.
The Model 3 is Tesla’s entry-level EV but is a great buy whether new or used. Users get exceptional range, some of the best available for an EV. The Model 3 is also a relatively nimble vehicle, boasting great horsepower.
Tesla also has a natural advantage when it comes to available infrastructure. While the American government has been providing funding, Tesla has gone on to develop its own separate infrastructure spanning the entire country.
Hyundai Kona EV
The Hyundai Kona EV has been a relatively popular choice for an entry-level EV. This alone makes it a contender for one of the most popular EVs in Pennsylvania. Hyundai has embraced EVs with some rather grand gestures, so you get a bevy of useful features out of the gate with the Kona EV.
This mid-sized SUV comes with one of the best warranties on the market. Hyundai covers just about everything you can imagine for a considerably longer amount of time than the competition. You also get a full suite of driver-assistive technology, making it a considerably safer vehicle overall.
Audi e-tron Sportback
Audi may not be known for EVs, but they certainly have released quite a nice one. The e-tron Sportback is one of the most popular EVs in Pennsylvania simply for marrying the luxury and comfortable stylings of Audi to an all-electric powertrain.
The e-tron Sportback most closely resembles Audi’s range of mid-size SUVs. Users get access to nearly 300 miles of range on a single charge, well above the average for most EVs, in addition to a suite of other great features. While BMW and Mercedes have their own EVs, they haven’t made the same sort of impact as the e-tron Sportback.
Kia Niro EV
Last, but certainly not least, is the Kia Niro EV. The Niro EV is a crossover SUV and is among the most popular EVs in Pennsylvania. It is a relatively affordable EV, with a starting MSRP of under $40,000. Kia’s line of EVs has had a relatively strong showing, similar to its counterpart, Hyundai.
The Niro EV is an excellent choice for potential owners looking for a spacious daily driver. It may lack the snappy performance of something like a Model Y, but there is plenty to like about the Niro EV. You get plenty of range with an estimated 253 miles per charge.
It also comes with an outboard power generator, so you can charge things like laptops, power banks, and more on the go.
Pennsylvania certainly has a ways to go before it can be considered one of the top states to own an EV. However, support is sure to come, especially given pushes by local organizations and the federal government.
If you are a PA resident and you’re interested in an EV, you do at least have some resources to go on. Thankfully, there is at least some charging infrastructure in place for day trips and the like.
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