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Published on August 16th, 2018 | by Zachary Shahan


Tesla Sues Ontario

August 16th, 2018 by  

If you’re Canadian or you follow EV policy closely, you’ve probably seen that a not-so-cool new Ontario government has kneecapped a popular electric vehicle incentive program. Well, Tesla says that’s super not cool and is now taking the Ontario government to court. Like a boss.

The EV incentive program offered rebates up to $14,000 CAD ($10,650 USD) for EV buyers. One of the strongest EV subsidies in the world, it drove a lot of electric car purchases, including a high number of Tesla purchases.

But hey, you can’t just sue a government for changing it’s policies, right? Tesla’s legal gripe isn’t that the policy was change — even though that is shitty. Rather, Tesla’s gripe is that the government worked out a special deal for people who had bought or ordered their cars before the policy change … but excluded Tesla buyers from it. Wait, what??

Apparently, to get included in the special provision, you had to have bought your car from a franchised dealer. Tesla doesn’t have franchised dealers, of course. No doubt about it, this discriminatory exclusion was no accident, which brings Tesla to the conclusion that it’s not just not cool — it’s also illegal.

“The unjustified targeting of Tesla Canada and its customers was done without giving Tesla any warning or the chance to provide input or submissions,” Tesla’s filing comments. “Tesla Canada received no reasons at all for its exclusion, which was an arbitrary and entirely unreasonable decision and should be quashed.”

Quash it with a Model X packed full of bricks is what I say. It’s cruel and unusual discrimination against Tesla owners.

Of course, the Tesla lawsuit is not idealistically aiming to get the Ontario government to reinstate the EV rebate. It’s simply aiming to have the arbitrary exclusion lifted for buyers who got or ordered their cars before the rebate was dropped.

Why did the Ontario government squeeze Tesla buyers out of the deal in the first place? It’s unclear, but a couple of reasons might be: 1) A ton of residents got or ordered their Model 3s recently. 2) A strong auto dealer lobby finagled a concession out of the new government rule-makers and pushed for specific language that gave their nemesis Tesla the cold shoulder. Or maybe it was just an accident? 


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About the Author

is tryin' to help society help itself one word at a time. He spends most of his time here on CleanTechnica as its director, chief editor, and CEO. Zach is recognized globally as an electric vehicle, solar energy, and energy storage expert. He has presented about cleantech at conferences in India, the UAE, Ukraine, Poland, Germany, the Netherlands, the USA, Canada, and Curaçao. Zach has long-term investments in Tesla [TSLA] — after years of covering solar and EVs, he simply has a lot of faith in this company and feels like it is a good cleantech company to invest in. But he does not offer (explicitly or implicitly) investment advice of any sort on Tesla or any other company.

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