CHATTANOOGA (WRCB) - Chattanooga and Tennessee will lead the next revolution in the shift to electric powered cars.  Officials have a plan to give the first 1,000 customers a $2,500 rebate from the state.  That's on top of $7,500 tax credit from the federal government.

It may seem like something from the Jetsons, but electric vehicles are the future of automobiles.  But what exactly is an EV?

Leaf EV Sales Specialist, Kevin Pierce says, "It's a vehicle with no combustible engine. It runs solely off a rechargeable battery, much like your cell phone."

Wes Kleiner is on a waiting list to get the brand new electric powered car, the Nissan Leaf.  He says it's a matter of taking responsibility and teaching his two daughters about preserving the environment. 

"I want to be able to make sure that I can pass on a legacy to her as she goes to college that will make her more aware of the environment and make her more conscious," says Kleiner. 

Kleiner says the new car will be convenient for his commute. He says, "work through the day, pick up my daughter from school and go back out to the house without having to ever stop at a gas station."

Tennessee is one of six states, plus Washington D.C., participating in the Electric Vehicle Project. It's funded by the U.S. Department of Energy and will help set nearly 15,000 charging stations. 37 of those stations will be in Chattanooga. President of Ruby Falls, Hugh Morrow says it's a matter of lifestyle for tourists who come to visit.

"We're excited that people can come visit our cities whether from Atlanta, Birmingham or Nashville and feel confident that they can bring electrical vehicles here," says Murrow. 

Kevin Pierce is an electric vehicle specialist. He says it's already a trend to be green and now the automotive world is a part of it.

"You can drive up to a 100 miles on a single charge and difference of $3 per gallon versus $3 to drive the car all day. I really think it's going to take off," says Pierce. 

The smart-charging stations for electric cars will be at rest areas, malls and big-box stores.

We should see the first stations within the next few months at the Lookout Mountain tourist attractions.

The customers that are on the waiting list say they are embracing this new shift in cars and see it as the future.