From the EV Driver's Seat: The electric vehicle as a family car

Thursday, September 17, 2015

This story is part of a weeklong series on electric vehicle drivers leading up to National Drive Electric Week. Join us at our Ann Arbor event on September 20, at the Whole Foods on Eisenhower parkway to meet EV drivers and try one out for yourself.

When software engineer Ben Hoffman went up north for Labor Day, he had to stop at a gas station for the first time in six months. He normally drives an electric vehicle.

“It’s nice starting everyday with a full charge,” he said.

Hoffman decided to buy a Nissan LEAF to replace the truck he was driving. As a software engineer who works on EV systems from time to time, he figured it would be good to know the product he was working on from the consumer standpoint as well.

And going electric after driving a truck was going to save quite a bit of money.

“For me the LEAF made a lot of sense because the lease payment on it is less than the price for my gas,” he said. “Economically it worked out well.”

Convenience wise, the first winter was a little tough, because there was no charging available at his office. He’d have to try and keep the heat down on his way in, to make sure there would be enough charge to get home. By the next year, however, there was a Level 2 charger at his workplace, New Eagle in Ann Arbor. Hoffman said driving electric has been incredibly convenient since, especially in a two-car family.

Hoffman will be at the Ann Arbor National Drive Electric week car show on Sunday. He said he’s happy to show others that an EV can work as a family car and that it’s convenient, economical and fun.

But he’ll take a break to check out some other cars with his wife and two children.

“My three year old is excited to see the Teslas,” he said. “As am I.”

See Teslas and other electric vehicles at the Drive Electric Week Ann Arbor Car Show . Local EV drivers like Ben will be ready to answer your questions, and show off their cars, from 10 am to 3 pm in the parking lot of the Whole Foods on Eisenhower Parkway this Sunday, September 20.

Photo courtesy of Flickr user We Like Cars via Creative Commons

Published on September 17, 2015