The Leaf looks like it has a lot of promise. It claims that it will be the world’s first affordable zero-emission car. It is going to be priced around $30,000, have a 100 mile electric range, and can be charged up to 80 percent of its full capacity in just under 30 minutes with a quick charger.
Yes. First of all, I have a few mechanics in my family, and the two cars that seldom come into their shop for repair are Toyotas and Nissans and trust these two to be the most dependable makers.
Secondly, the Leaf is highway capable and offers a range of 100 miles. Nissan says the car will be priced competitively against regular gasoline-powered cars of the same size and class.
The above response ignores the fact that many locations in the U.S. do not have sufficient public transportation, and that automobiles are essential for most people to get around, especially the elderly and disabled, and others who cannot conceivable ride a bicycle for all of their transportation needs.
The Nissan leaf claims a range of 100 miles on a single charge, which is not as high as some other electric concept models, but is still sufficient for the daily needs of 80% of the world’s motorists. The fast charge capabilities of the Leaf allow the battery to be charged to 80% capacity in 30 minutes, and an even shorter ten-minute charge can add over 30 extra miles of range. There may be some problems with its overall range and performance, but the electric Nissan Leaf is still a more green option than any conventional gas-powered car.
The elderly and disabled can and do take public transit, and in areas where there is insufficient transit there are specialty programs to pick up the slack. Where I live about 10% of the bus ridership is technically a senior or disabled, if not more. The problem is that many areas are still using old buses that are not disabled/elderly friendly.
Of course many elderly and disabled people utilize public transit, and it’s a good thing that new bus and train technology is focused on providing access for those who need it most. But these “specialty programs” that you speak of certainly are still no replacement for automobiles for the vast majority of the population. You’re referring to paratransit (mini-buses, van transport, etc) cannot be counted on to provide for all the transportation needs of the elderly community. Automobiles are still essential for most people in suburban and rural communities. Electric and hybrid cars should be considered an environmental improvement, rather than expecting rural citizens to embrace poor public transit options.
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