I have been given a lot of grief lately. Actually, hate. Hate is a strong word, right? It’s suitable here. Many people consider themselves car people only if they live and breathe race fuel. Obviously that’s not the case as you can be into cars and only be into the aesthetic aspect. Here at CAMautoMag, we tend to focus on the racing aspect of cars and so many were shocked to find out that I had traded in my petrol-powered vehicle for…a Nissan LEAF.
You heard me right, a full-electric car. I work from home and my wife stays home with our daughter, for short jaunts around town, this car is perfect for us. So have I jumped off the deep end, I don’t think so. The car is torquey and up to 30-40mph, it feels pretty quick. Sure the steering is numb, but you don’t need an electric car to get that. I still own a V10 Dodge Viper and a turbocharged Honda S2000, and now a Jeep Wrangler Rubicon, so I still love cars, but I wanted to try something different.
In spire of the hate, this car has a legitimate racing pedigree. It won it’s class at Pike Peak in 2011. Nissan developed a full-on race car based on the LEAF to showcase what could be done with it. Nismo even developed a special edition model that is soon to be released that decreases drag and weight on the car. They are dedicating the time now, because there will be a day when electric cars are more prevalent. I’m not saying it’s the solution by any means, but we are trending that way in the short-term.
Can I still have fun with this car over the next 2 years? Well I already have wheels for it, so that’s a start. This car requires a different mindset than a traditional car, and it’s not for everyone, but I think there is great potential in the future for an electric or hybrid performance vehicle. Mitsubishi has toyed with the idea for the next Evolution, Ferrari and McLaren are all-in on hybrid systems in their new supercars, so why is it that I take for all intensive purposes, a Nissan Versa with some batteries, and get hate? I feel that people don’t understand its purpose, but here I am, I’ve jumped in, I’ll let you know if the water is fine over the next year or two.
Words by Trent Bray