Jan 03

Web entrepreneur Olivier Chalouhi decribes the altruistic selfish reason he opted to by a Nissan Leaf:

“It all started,” Chalouhi says, “when I saw an ad for the Chevy Volt.” The Volt, which started shipping to dealers in mid-December, is the Leaf’s chief competitor in the green-car sweepstakes. It runs for about 40 miles on an electric charge before a small gasoline engine kicks in to recharge the battery. That gives the Volt more than 350 miles of range—unlike the Leaf, which runs for 60 to 100 miles, varying with weather and terrain and driving style, before needing a recharge that can take 30 minutes to 7 hours, depending on the strength of the charger. The Volt’s gasoline engine makes it less attractive to some eco-minded consumers like Chalouhi. “In all the articles I read about the Volt, the Leaf was discussed as well,” he says. “As soon as I found out about the Leaf, I forgot about the Volt. The Volt wasn’t going to project the image I wanted. It has a tailpipe.”

Green vanity is nothing new of course. Personally I’ve noticed that the only homes that I’ve ever seen a Smart Car parked in front of are homes of the wealthy. Smart Cars, the Nissan Leaf, and the like are hardly cars of the masses, their large price tags make them just cool gadgets that soothe eco-egos.

BTW, much like the leafy dashboard display on the Ford Fusion hybrid, has it occurred to anyone else that the name Nissan Leaf is a paradox, i.e. does not a fossil fuel gulping, CO2 (plant food) breathing SUV do more for leaves than a zero emission vehicle?

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