We all know that electric cars are either glorified milk floats or big boys’ toys, don’t we? Well, not any more..
With the Nissan Leaf and the Renault Zoe, we can honestly say we have moved into the future. Our Vice-chair and his wife took a 5-seater Leaf for a 24 hour trial and – totally unexpectedly – have been completely wowed. They confidently assert that if this isn’t the total solution (the range will have to be better for that) it is at least the game-changer. And as part of our service to Stretton residents we’ve arranged with Nissan and Greenhous Shrewsbury to give you the opportunity to try them out for yourself and challenge them to answer all those obvious questions like what happens when you run out of battery and how far they can really go with the lights on and the windscreen wipers on and the heating/air con etc.
The one thing that is not in doubt is the spectacular driving experience. It’s fast, comfortable, holds the road beautifully and is quieter than a Rolls Royce ( – probably; none of us have actually been in a Rolls recently). And thanks to the internet, any number of bloggers will tell you that it’s exceeded their expectations, with many saying they bought it as a second car and now use it 95% of the time.
It’s easy to be sceptical about claims made by the manufacturers so we’re indebted to Grant Thomas for doing all the independent investigation we would have otherwise had to do for ourselves. Read his blog here – he’s owned his Nissan Leaf for a year – and then come and see for yourself on Saturday November 2nd.
Assuming you’re convinced by the cars themselves, there’s still the issue of Range Anxiety, as it’s called. None of these vehicles has yet got the same kind of range as an ordinary petrol guzzler. So even though the running costs are one tenth (yes 10%) of a normal car, and even though there’s a £5,000 government grant to make them more attractive financially, there’s still the problem of how many times you would have to stop to recharge, and the fear of being stranded.
Fear not, oh Strettonian. We have asked Jane Holmes, the Regional Manager of Plugged in Midlands to come to our AGM on Wednesday 20th November and give us the latest news on what is being done to ensure that it’s as easy as recharging your mobile phone (and we can all remember when that was a nightmare, can’t we?). See you at Church Stretton School on 2nd November, and The Methodist Church on 20th. We have seen the future; and it’s really cool!