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Learning To Drive In A Nissan Leaf: Video

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Last year, Michael Thwaite wrote about the experience of teaching his daughter to drive in a MINI E. As he pointed out, the all-electric car made for a smooth ride, which helped cool his nerves and those of his daughter. Also, the low speeds they maintained on the training course meant that hours of test-drives had little effect on the MINI E's battery charge. And father and daughter completed their training without producing any noise pollution or tailpipe emissions.

It sounds like electric cars could be tailor-made for drivers-in-training.

Well, maybe. As a new video from Kelly Olsen shows, parts of the learning experience remains just as stressful for parents and their offspring, regardless of what's under the hood.

Olsen lives in California, and she has a thing for electric cars. (You might recall her video from August, shaming the owners of combustion-engined vehicles who'd parked in electric-car charging spots.)

Recently, Olsen took her camera to the home of Price Campbell, whose parents -- Marvin and Mea -- were teaching him to drive in Mea's Nissan Leaf.

We're not entirely sure what Olsen hoped to capture on her outing with the family. We expected some discussion of the difficulties of learning to drive an electric car versus one with a combustion engine. Personally, we've always found the immediate power that comes when you step on the accelerator of an electric car to be a little disconcerting, even for experienced drivers. Surely, it would present a challenge to the novice?

But no. What we find is that Price and his family are just like thousands of other families around the world: the student driver is giddy, his parents are nervous, and in the end, everyone walks away a little jittery, but no worse for wear. Then, mom asks for a glass of wine.

Back in October, we wrote about the first U.K. citizen to pass his driving exam in an electric car. Now, less than two months later, we see a U.S. driver-to-be doing the same, and it's no big deal at all. Have we already passed the hump? Have electric cars become so normal, so mundane that driving one -- even taking a driver's exam in one -- is no big whoop?

We can only hope.

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Comments (2)
  1. All I can say is keep your hand on that center column e-brake.
     
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  2. Thanks for the little story about my videos. By the way, I'm the "she" who is actually a "he."

    I guess you could call my 20-year-interest in electric vehicles a "thing" since I make videos about the EV experience, work closely with Plug In America and as a former Santa Monica City Councilman I created Santa Monica's Alternative Fueled Vehicle Policy which has resulted in our community being recognized as a leader in EV infrastructure as well as having numerous EVs in the City's fleet.

    It should be noted that the father in this video, J. Marvin Price, is a long time EV owner and actually played the role of "Gasoline' in our Plug In America public service announcement spots which were a take off of the Mac VS. PC commercials.
     
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