U.S.-based electric vehicle manufacturer Tesla has sued the Ontario Ministry of Transportation (MTO) over the government’s decision to cancel the province’s electric vehicle rebate program.
According to Tesla’s August 10th, 2018 Ontario Superior Court of Justice filing, the new Ontario government under premier Doug Ford initially promised that individuals who purchased or ordered an electric vehicle before the cancellation date would still be eligible for the rebate.
However, when the government released its EV rebate transition plan, the MTO chose to grandfather all rebate applications “except for purchases from Tesla Canada.”
Tesla further claims that the Ontario government has explicitly targeted the company, referencing, among other things, comments made by Ontario transportation minister John Yakabuski at the Legislative Assembly.
“The electric vehicle program — we made it very clear that that would be one of the programs that would be lost,” said Yakabuski.
“But we also were extremely fair in the way we ended it. On July 11th, we announced that until September 10th, all dealers and anyone who had purchased a vehicle or had a vehicle on order, as long as it was plated and delivered by September 10th, other than Tesla — they would receive their rebate.”
According to Tesla, “the unjustified targeting of Tesla Canada its customers was done without giving Tesla Canada any warning or the chance to provide input or submissions.”
Tesla added that it attempted to “deal directly” with the MTO, but that the MTO “failed to answer Tesla Canada’s attempts to discuss the matter.”
The EV manufacturer’s court filings request an urgent court hearing, as the company only has until September 10th to ensure that individuals who ordered or purchased a vehicle on or before July 11th, 2018 can receive the grandfathered EV rebate.
Additionally, Tesla has requested that the court quash the government’s “arbitrary and entirely unreasonable” decision to exclude the company from the grandfathered EV rebate.
An MTO spokesperson told MobileSyrup via email that department is “aware of the application for judicial review filed by Tesla Canada. As this matter is before the courts, it would be inappropriate to comment.”
MobileSyrup has reached out to Tesla for comment. This story will be updated with a response.
With files from Bradley Bennett.
Source: Canadian Press