So cheap gas is turning out to be not so cheap. At last check, a gallon of regular was going for $2.85 in parts of California, and figures below $2 seem to have gone out with flowers’ first bloom this spring. The sudden shift, which actually wasn’t so sudden, should drive consumers back to the hybrid vehicles they seemed to abandoned at U.S. dealerships. (As for electric vehicles, they’ve had six straight record sales months.)
It turns out this spring is an excellent time to take advantage of deals on electric vehicles and hybrids. While several automakers look to upgrade their EV lineups with longer-range models and redesigned products, the old stock has to move. The situation is ripe for green car buyers who had been waiting for the right price. Here are the five best deals available on plug-ins and standard hybrids as May comes to a close. Several offers extend into July.
1. Kia Soul EV
At first glance, the $247 per month lease deal on the Kia Soul EV may not seem like a steal, but dealer terms change the effective cost in a big way. In the deal quoted until May 31, 2016, buyers can get a 36-month package with $0 down payment. That knocks down the effective rate to $195 a month. Make the first month’s payment and you drive away in a 2016 Soul EV-e for a net price of $20,400. Up to 12,000 miles per year are included.
2. Ford Fusion Energi
The markup on a Ford Fusion Energi plug-in hybrid can seem extreme when you are shopping for a midsize sedan, but lease deals on the outgoing (2016) model are knocking $10,000 off the net price. Until July 5, dealers are waiving the down payment on 36-month leases. With a monthly payment of $249, that makes the effective price below $200 a month. Considering you can travel well over 700 miles between fill-ups in this car, you can see how remaining inventory might go fast.
3. Toyota Prius
Since the launch of the 2016 Toyota Prius, lease deals have kept the economical hybrid on the pricey side in the compact segment, but spring has brought the number down to earth. A Prius Two lease will currently run consumers $209 per month with $2,699 due at signing. Purchase offers include 0% financing for 60 months as well. Both deals include two years of maintenance with free roadside assistance. This offer runs until the end of May 2016.
4. Kia Optima Hybrid
The 2016 Kia Optima Hybrid is another model that has seen its prices drop during the automaker’s summer sales event. Through July 5, consumers can pick up an Optima Hybrid for $193 a month for 24 months with $1,499 due at signing. Short-term commitment is the way to go here as the 36-month lease bumps the price up to $219 a month with the same down payment.
5. BMW i3
Of the many deals on electric vehicles available this spring, BMW has one of the most attractive on the i3 in the outgoing (2015) model year. With $4,084 due at signing, lessees can pay $159 a month for 30 months. The deal includes a one-year subscription to Sirius Satellite radio, 19-inch i light-alloy star-spoke wheels, LED headlights, and heated front seats. This car is the most economical vehicle for sale on the U.S. market, so we know operating costs won’t be an issue. BMW has this offer available until May 31, 2016.