Politics

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We as electric  car owners, need to be aware and wary of government officials that unfairly blame us for the shrinking DOT coffers. Apparently, not having to buy gas is an abomination to tax collectors and the oil companies. In NC I/we pay an electric car tax of $100 at our annual registration so we are footing our share of the bill for road use. I would like to propose that instead of polititians looking for creative tax revenue sources, that they start looking within at their own outdated and inefficient systems and methods.  If the increasingly more efficient combustion engine is reducing gas tax collection, government agencies relying on those taxes need to increase their efficiency. I would start with the extravagant salaries and retirement benifits of elected officials and high ranking administrators that are bleeding those coffers dry. They usetheir right hand to point blame at ev users, healthcare, and welfare recipients, while picking your pocket with their left handed tax expansions that further shield their assets while reducing yours. Is there any wonder why common sense is unable to prevail. The worse part is that its our fault. We put them there.  Its time to reward people for making good choices and suport them and time to remind public servants what the words public and servant means.

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Days Like These

This could probably be considered a pros post. I’m sitting in the dealership lobby while my gas car is serviced and inspected, wishing I were somewhere else.  Electric cars have very few components that need servicing. So as to not violate my own rules, as listed in an earlier post, I try to keep my gas car in good condition even though I only drive it once a week on average.

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Your Next Car Should Be Electric

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We had a great time at the Cars and Coffee event in Charlotte NC at the NC Music Factory. We met some great guys who own electric cars and gained a lot of very useful information on the different electric models, not to mention the hundreds of custom, antique, hot rod,  and mod cars that were in attendance.  It was nice to see a couple of Chevy Volts, and a Tesla up close and under the hood, which is empty since all the workings are under the car. That leaves an incredible amount of storage space. It truly gives the impression that the car has no motor, electric or otherwise. My Miev also turned some heads but more to the order of “What is that!?”, or “how is that car with no engine noise moving”. The Miev is totaly silent when movning at slow speeds. It’s even more quiet than golf carts.  The only down side of the event is that electric cars were probably close to 1 percent of the cars there.

I have made three rules that seem to cover all the concerns of prospective  EV car buyers. If you can answer yes to all three conitions, your next car should be electric.

      1. Your daily commute is less than 50 miles round trip. If you have access to a charger, your daily commute can be up to 70 miles round trip.

      2. Your old gas car is in fare condition.

      3. You were planning to purchase a car costing more than $25k.

If you satisfy all three conditions, your next car should be electric. The first rule assumes that you may only have access to a level 1 charger and may not be able add many miles back to the car once you reach your destination and you may have to make the return trip only on your morning charge. Secondly, you will still need to have access to a gas powered vehicle even though you won’t drive it much. In fact, ev owners have to remember to run the engines on gassers at least once a week or they start to have engine trouble. I sometimes go two weeks before I remember to run mine. Thirdly, there is an ev in your price range now. An economy model I-Miev can cost less than $20k, while the Tesla models run from $70 to $150K +  .  The Leaf and Volts are somewhere inbetween in the $40’s and $50’s. There are people out there that only buy BMW or Mercedes. We know who you are. They’ve got you covered now also.

On the way back we stopped at the Concord Modern Nissan dealership to use their DC fast charger since we were running a little low, and were invited to hotdogs and hamburgers at their customer appreciation event. Nissan is still leading the way.  They fed us and added 30 miles of range to my car.

Folks, break your leash. An electric car should be your next car.

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Start Young

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My daughters “cartoon”. Obviously, thats not me driving since whoever is driving has hair and hair enough to blow in the wind. Must be a very windy day also since the car is still plugged in 🙂

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CHAdeMO Charger Now In Concord

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Modern Nissan of Concord now has their fast DC charger operational after a few delays on installation due to all the rain we have had lately. Very friendly staff that had no problem letting me hook up for a charge even though my car is the Mitsubishi shown in this post.

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The charger is located on the opposite side of the building from the level II chargers. It is located at the corner of the service bay with easy access.

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In case you have not used a fast charger before, they are not just the simple plug and go that the level II chargers are. There is a process to using this charger so be sure to read the directions on the graphics and note that the handle comes up has you push the charging handle straight into the port. In other words, you have to line up the end, push in a couple of inches then secure the handle end with the slide. Ask for help if this is confusing. It confused me the first time.

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I was already at a pretty full charge, so I don’t think the charger kicked in a full current. Quite a bit more communication going on between the car and the charger than with the lower level chargers. Still, I was childishly happy to have access to a super charger without having to leave town. Thanks Nissan.

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CHAdeMO Coming Soon to Concord

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I talked to the folks at Modern Nissan in Concord about the new DC fast charger that has been installed. The guy at the service department told me that it is fully installed but not ready for use until one more final inspection that has to wait until the rain stops due to the electrical components that need to be exposed. When dealing with the amperage and voltage that these things operate at, I can totally understand. They expect that it will be operational for the public sometime next week. I plan to check on it again on Friday April 25 and will post what I find then. If you have any questions don’t bother calling and speaking to anyone other than the folks in the service department. They are the only ones with the information on the charger.

Again, thanks to Nissan for installing this charger and making it available to anyone. Having a fast charger in the area changes the landscape of the market for electric vehicles for the entire town. Level 1 and level 2 chargers are fine if you are able to stick to predictable driving habits but every once in a while, the unexpected happens and it causes you to use your range down to 5 miles or less and your day is done…, unless there is a DC charger in the area for a quick milage jump to finish your errands and top off back at the house. Also, why pay $2000 for the quick charge option if there are no quick chargers available in your area. The first time I used a quick charger, I had plenty of range left but I just wanted to see what would happen since I had never used the ChAdeMO port.

Be aware that for most models, frequent use of DC fast chargers can shorten battery life and are recommended only for occasional use. They should not be used for everyday charging but in a pinch, they are essential.

New Fast DC Charger In The Area

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The Modern Nissan is in the process of installing this ChadeMo level 3 fast charger, which I believe, is the first in Concord. I have great expectations that this will encourage more electric vehicle ownership in this area. The other level 2 public charging stations are also wonderful incentives.

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