Getting to Green: Minnesota's energy future

Minnesota e-bike rebates: 7 questions, answered

A man stands next a bike-2
Tony Winkler explains features on e-bikes for sale in the shop e-Bike Duluth. Winkler said sales are brisk. He expects high demand for a new state e-bike rebate. "E-bikes are really the wave of the future," Winkler said.
Dan Kraker | MPR News 2023

Quick Read

The rebates are designed to reduce the cost to purchase a new e-bike from an eligible retailer. Getting a rebate application might be harder than first expected.

Minnesotans rushed a state website Wednesday morning hoping for a chance to apply online for an e-bike rebate worth up to $1,500. But the prospects for a sweet rebate proved too much for the technology as the site crashed shortly after its 11 a.m. launch.

The rebate program is still ready to go, but officials had to shut down the online application window for the rest of Wednesday as they worked to get the website fixed and back up.

The rebates are designed to reduce the cost to purchase a new e-bike from an eligible retailer. The Legislature authorized $2 million each year in 2024 and 2025 for the program. 

Electric-assisted bicycles, or e-bikes, have surged in popularity in recent years, among both recreational cyclists and bike commuters, as a fun and climate-friendlier option to driving a gasoline-powered vehicle. The electric motor provides an assist and allows cyclists to go farther and faster while still getting exercise. 

As Minnesotans wait for the state site to come back up, here are some things to know about the program.

1) How much are the rebates?

The discount ranges from 50 to 75 percent of the value of a new e-bike and qualifying accessories such as a helmet, lock or reflective clothing. The maximum rebate is $1,500. The amount of the rebate depends on your income.

2) How much do e-bikes cost?

The prices vary — a lot. E-bikes can cost $500 to $2,500, or much more. Some models are as high as $15,000.

3) How many rebates are available?

The Minnesota Department of Revenue will accept up to 10,000 rebate applications and review them on a first-come, first-served basis. The law requires that 40 percent of rebates must go to applicants with incomes below a certain level. 

The department expects to issue about 1,300 rebates on July 1. They must be used within two months.

4) Who can apply?

You must be at least 15 years old, and have been a Minnesota resident this year and last year. You can’t have been claimed as a dependent in tax year 2023.

Rebates are issued to individuals so more than one eligible family member can apply.

5) How do I apply?

Go to the e-bike rebate page on the Minnesota Department of Revenue website. The application will be live at 11 a.m. Wednesday.

You might need to be patient, however. The site crashed early on after going live Wednesday because of high demand. Officials say they’re working on a fix.

Once it’s back up, you’ll need to provide your name, contact information, date of birth, Social Security or individual taxpayer identification number, tax filing status for 2023 and your adjusted gross income for 2023. 

If you successfully apply, you’ll receive a confirmation email.

6) Will there be other chances to apply?

If there’s money for this year’s program left over after Oct. 1, the department will issue more rebates to those who didn’t get one during the first round. Another application period will open in 2025.

7) Where can I find more information?

The Minnesota Department of Revenue’s website has lots of information, including a list of approved retailers searchable by name or city. 

There’s also a feature that will calculate your potential rebate based on your income and tax filing status.

Volume Button
Volume
Now Listening To Livestream
MPR News logo
On Air
MPR News