HERNDON, Virginia — The 2016 Volkswagen e-Golf, the German brand's first fully electric car for the United States, gets a $4,455 price cut for the new model year to better position it against the Nissan Leaf.
The previous base 2015 Volkswagen e-Golf Limited Edition, which debuted in March, is priced at $34,270, including shipping.
Volkswagen spokesman Mark Gillies told Edmunds the e-Golf Limited Edition has been discontinued for 2016.
The top-of-the-line 2016 Volkswagen e-Golf SEL Premium model is priced at $36,415, including shipping, reflecting a $150 price increase over the 2015 model, Gillies said.
Pricing is before any federal or state tax credits. The e-Golf is eligible for a $7,500 federal tax credit.
Volkswagen said the price cut on the e-Golf is designed to make the car "fully competitive with the Nissan Leaf."
The 2015 Nissan Leaf starts at $29,860, including an $850 destination charge. Nissan has not announced 2016 Leaf pricing.
Like the e-Golf Limited Edition, the new e-Golf SE has fewer amenities, Gillies said. They include halogen instead of LED headlights, cloth in place of leatherette seating, the deletion of the heat-pump system, no navigation system, a plastic steering wheel, a smaller touchscreen for the infotainment system and a standard 3.6kW onboard charger.
The 2016 e-Golf SE will be available at select Volkswagen dealerships in the 10 ZEV states, plus Washington, D.C., starting in September. ZEV stands for "zero-emissions vehicle." The ZEV states include California, Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island and Vermont.
Sales of electric vehicles have been sluggish this year, mainly due to relatively low gas prices.
Volkswagen of American sold 1,831 e-Golfs through the end of July and 2,188 in total since the car's debut late last year.
Edmunds says: EV shoppers get a new lower-priced e-Golf with fewer amenities. But they also end up with more cash in their wallets.