A few years back when I first heard about electric cars, I was in awe. I always knew I wanted one, but the price was much too high (about $31,000 minus a $7,500 tax credit), and of course, the technology, in my opinion, was just too new.
Last week, my mother listened to the Clark Howard radio show in the morning and told me that Nissan was leasing the Leaf at an affordable price. This eliminated the high cost (my payments are less than $300 per month) and the worry that I'd be stuck with a car that's riddled with mechanical problems. (After all, Nissan has to provide me with a car that will live up to the 36 month agreement.)
In less than one week, we were test driving a Leaf, making a deposit, and riding off into the sunset with a car that produces 0 emissions. I was both nervous and excited all at once...
Now that I'm a proud owner for a whopping 5 days, I can tell you that I'm super happy with my decision. It's a perfect car for my daily commute back and forth to work and also my errand shopping on the weekends. I calculate it will save me about $400 per month on gas.
- No more trips to the gas station.
- No more oil changes.
- Cost to charge the car is equivalent to a load of laundry running in the dryer for an hour or two.
- Our "trickle charger" plugs into any outlet. (We don't need to install a Charging Station in our garage.)
- High crash safety ratings (4 stars out of 5 stars).
- Good for the environment. (We signed up to use wind, solar, and water for our electric, and so this car is not using any fossil fuels to run--no gas, coal, or oil.)
- Not a car for long commutes or family vacations. (Gets 80 miles per charge during the summer and 50-60 miles per charge during the winter.)
- Charging station locations (for quick 15 minute to 1/2 an hour charges) are few and far between.
- Not a car for large families that want comfort.
|Our Nissan Leaf at the dealership. It's a fun car to drive!|
|(The little door behind me is where we change the battery.)|
The Nissan Leaf is not a car that will accommodate everyone's needs, but it does work for someone that makes shorter commutes. (I work approximately 40 minutes away from home, so it works for me.) It's exciting to drive a car that back in the 80's (when I was growing up) was only something you saw in futuristic, sci-fi movies. My little boy loves bragging that we own an electric car, and he's amazed that we charge it just like a cell phone or a laptop. To think that in another 10 years, the idea of an electric car might be very commonplace... The technology, I know, will continue to grow by leaps and bounds...