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Effort to re-charge electric car market

Henrietta, N.Y.   A new state program aims to accelerate growth in the electric vehicle market.

Rochesters electric vehicle market remains, in the words of one dealership manager, stagnant.

I really think when you are changing consumers buying habits who have been so used to a gasoline powered automobile, its going to take a while for people to get into the comfort zone of buying electric cars, said Brad McAreavy, President of the Rochester Automobile Dealers Association.

OConnor Chevrolet of Henrietta sold just two Chevy Volts in the past two-and-a-half months, according to a manager at the dealership. The Volt is a hybrid vehicle that runs on both electricity and gasoline.

I think people dont really quite realize that the cost of energy is about the same whether you buy electricity or you buy gasoline, said Bill Destler, President of the Rochester Institute of Technology, and a Volt owner.

In early September, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that two million dollars would be available through the states Charge NY program for projects that would improve the development and use of electric vehicles.

Will the program create a significant uptick in EV sales, probably not in the short run but it will be an important assist to the program over time, George Cook, Executive Director with the Simon School of Business.

Alan Eagan of Webster visited Hoselton Nissan Tuesday in search of a new vehicle, but said he would consider an electric one.

It seems like a lot goes into it and if customers dont want to buy it, why try to put incentives out there? Its supposed to work by itself, right? questioned Alan Eagan of Webster.

Some portions of the electric vehicle market are doing well. Canandaiguas Myfleetdept.com has worked with the Greater Rochester International Airport, RIT and a corporation installing additional charging stations in Rochester.

Were there, we see the future opportunity and electric vehicles are only going to increase in popularity and the reason for that is the federal fuel economy standards.

Fuel economy must reach 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025 for cars and light trucks because of new federal fuel efficiency standards.

 
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