New Leaf Pays Its Way

Oregon Electric Vehicle Association (OEVA) member Chris Arnesen and his wife are the proud owners of a brand new, all electric Nissan Leaf after being without a car for almost two years. During that time they used public transportation and joined the car-sharing program, Zipcar.

They have been keeping track of the cost of the electricity to “fuel” their Leaf since they got it in March and it averages around $34 a month. When Chris was commuting in their 2003 Subaru the gas bill was $240 a month, so they are saving just over $200 a month in fuel costs alone. Commuting 60 miles daily to his job and back on buses may have been cheaper in dollars, but he spent many more hours in travel time each month than in a car. So no matter how you look at it, Chris is far better off driving an electric vehicle (EV).

But the dollar savings that the Leaf provides go far beyond just the cost of its fuel. Over time, and Chris expects to keep this car at least 10 years, his EV will save on maintenance costs as well. No more oil changes, no more replacing timing belts, mufflers, exhaust pipes, spark plugs, anti-freeze, oxygen sensors, catalytic converters, fuel pumps, fuel injectors and so forth.

Yes, at the end of 10 years the Leaf’s battery pack may hold only 80% of the charge that it did when it was new, but he can still continue to commute his 60 miles a day with absolutely no “Range Anxiety” whatsoever.

Now, if all of that that isn’t enough to send you running for your Nissan dealer, think about this: Chris and his wife will never again be spewing exhaust fumes into the air over the Rose City, nor will they ever again send any of their hard earned dollars to a third world OPEC country that could very well be supporting terrorist activity against America. Put a price on that.

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