So if one of my top goals is to reduce emissions leading to global warming - how does buying one car help? Especially early in the development of the mainstream electric?
Given that there will be discussion about the long tailpipe idea - which turns out to be mostly a minor emission point compared to the overall savings - lets for now grant the one car is an improvement. How is it worth the cons we discussed. Shorter range - that will probably improve, charging times that will shorten. It's only one car's CO2 savings - but it's a major commitment of my finances to buy early.
Simple. One of the oil industry strategies is to claim there is no demand for electric cars. This was tried with the GM EV1 by those trying to defeat the electric car from within and without that company.
The Leaf for 2011/2012 is looking at less then 20K cars Nissan has allocated to the US and around another 20K to Japan and the world. It's documented that all the Oppama Japan plant can make is selling. It's critical these get sold so Americans can see the benefits of the electric car. So myself and other first adopters are here to get in line. Now if your household is ready for a second car and wants to help early - hey I'm there for you. Get in touch.
( Quick note - I have no interest in Nissan or any car company. I am grateful for them coming to Smyrna TN. and planning on making 150K 2013 Leafs and 200K advanced batteries in the U.S. ! )
Where we early adopters need the second wave is the 2013 Leaf. Every indication is this will be nicely improved from 2012. Let me be clear - I LOVE my 2012. I think the extra year I have it saving on gas is thoroughly worth it. The goal doesn't need you yet though - NISSAN sells these 20K cars no problem. The real time for everyone is late calendar 2012 and beyond - which is the domestic made 2013 Leaf. So - US made but a Japanese company ok? - Go for a Leaf 2013. A plug in hybrid better? - a Volt - all US and with careful driving very improved emissions and mileage cost. ( Or at least a plug in Prius - a little lame on distance but at least you have skin in the game. ) A US electric? Perhaps the Ford Focus Electric will be available then...
The 150K Leafs will be small compared to the yearly sales of combustion vehicles ( ~ 12 mil ). I believe this group will repeat the greatest rewards in terms of improved performance but still maximum incentives while they last. However 1 - 1.1% of US sales is actually a serious goal - similar to the growth of hybrids. We need everyone to consider the electric if it fits your lifestyle.
This is the vehicle to talk to your spouse about. Perfect for a two car family. Put plenty of low cost commuter miles on it and extend the life of that second long range car. Initially expensive but competitive with incentives and lack of Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) maintenance - all in all very practical.
With the 100-200K electrics in service - economies of scale and research start to work.
Electrics start to make things better for everyone and are ready when the world needs an answer - rather then forever '5 more years' in the future. You reap the bennies for thinking ahead
That's my goal. You have time. Start doing your research though - we'll need you soon.
P.S. Ask to drive my car *
* Please be licensed, over 21, and reasonably kind to my car - grin. I come along...