The joys of an all electric car

For the past week, I’ve had the use of an all electric car, the Nissan Leaf. It’s fantastic.

I’m not really a big car guy, but I appreciate technology, and how cars have evolved to come with some pretty cool features. I recently had Apple CarPlay installed in my 10 year old Honda, and I love it.

The Nissan Leaf has technology off the charts. Firstly, the fact there is no exhaust pipe is mind blowing. Of course there is no exhaust, this vehicle has zero emissions. It’s run from a battery. There is no petrol tank, no petrol engine. Hardly any moving parts, apart from the wheels.

The EV dash – note how the battery life and remaining kms are clearly shown

And before you go ‘Oh yeah, well how far will a battery take you?’, this one has 280kms on full charge. And yes, you can charge it at home, as I’ve been doing, from my solar panel energy.

So don’t worry about running out of power. The sun has a few good years left in it yet.

And yes, there are actually plenty of recharging stations all over Perth and WA. Some are super fast, some are normal, and of course you can charge from home.

How far you have left on the battery, and how full the it’s charged is clearly visible on the dash.

So with that out of the way, let’s drive the thing. Which is what it’s built for. This will make you smile.

First, the pull away. Oh. My. Goodness. The acceleration is incredible, dare I say electric. It’s so cool, so fun to drive, like a go kart, but comfortable, almost silent (just a slightly audible electronic whine), and cornering is soooo good.

This car has all the fruit of a modern car, the reversing cameras (not just one, but many around the side provide an amazing birds eye view), and an e-Pedal drive option that means you only need one foot to drive. You barely need the break, as taking your foot off the accelerator breaks the car and actually recharges the battery. Don’t ask me how it does this.

I may not buy an EV now, but as I predicted many years ago, if I do buy another car, it will be an EV. In a few years time, few of us will have a choice, as most car manufacturers will phase out production of new petrol engine cars by 2030 or 2035. That’s not far away.

At the moment, only 1 in 1000 cars on the roads are EV. That will change. In China, 1 in 20 cars sold are EVs. In Norway, 70% are EVs. Ten years ago, only 16% of new cars sold in Australia were SUVs; now it’s over a half. The same will happen with EVs.

All hail the EV. Not before time.

Look – no exhaust!

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An EV conference is taking place next week in Perth, out at the airport – register your interest to attend on this website.

About the author

Charlie has spent more than 20 years in Perth’s tech and startup sector, firstly as a founder himself, through to exit, and more recently as a writer, advisor and investor. Originally from the UK, Charlie worked in Singapore before arriving in Perth in 1997 to do an MBA at UWA. Graduating as top student in 1999 he set up online real estate business aussiehome.com, running it for 10 years before selling to REIWA, whereupon Charlie ran reiwa.com. In 2013, he moved to Business News to lead their digital transformation as CEO, and then worked for the federal government’s Accelerating Commercialisation program, funding pre-revenue startups and innovative businesses. He now works in an advisory capacity for multiple tech and other businesses, is managing editor of Startup News and co-host of the Startup West podcast. He also writes a column for Business News on startups. Charlie sits on the advisory boards of WA Leaders, TEDxPerth, WAITTA, the Perth Symphony Orchestra, and the full board of Rise Network.

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