111 miles from a full charge.

That's the impressive figure attained by not one but two MyNissanLeaf forum members, leafme and Randy on their first journey home having picked up their respective LEAFs from Fontana Nissan in California. Tackling the highways heading South to San Diego their only break in progress was for a 90-minute Level 2 charge in Temecula at Quality Nissan to ease their range anxiety.

The charge was almost unnecessary in the end. The 1.5 hour top-up added an extra 18 miles of range to each car, and at the end of the 112-mile journey, Randy had 19 miles remaining and leafme, known outside cyberspace as Malcolm, around 17 miles. Both the cars were left in Eco mode and it clearly works, offering a healthy portion of extra range over Nissan's 100-mile estimates.

Highway speeds settled at around 55 miles per hour, though their earlier progress had been at nearer 51-52mph before a couple of irate motorists encouraged a slight increase in progress. For the final miles of the trip the drivers even turned off Eco mode and upped the pace further, enjoying the performance on offer.

It was clearly a novel experience to both drivers, with Randy remarking "Hard to believe we are propelling 3500 lbs of car down the road for two hours on a battery just like it was a regular car." We've found out ourselves how much like a regular car the LEAF feels, the illusion only being broken by the refinement and silence.

Randy did remark that it's difficult to predict how long your range might be - the indicator changes constantly depending on the type of driving you're doing, and he predicts that you'd need a few more miled under your belt before you can start predicting how far you'll go. The journey has reassured Malcolm though, who reckons future driving "won't be quite as conservative" now that he's confident in what mileage is achievable.

Their comments have been reassuring for other new owners too, many of whom are picking their cars up soon and all of whom are looking forward to their first drive home.

Both drivers admit that this sort of range is definitely something to enjoy whilst the battery is very new, though even so the 110 miles plus achieved by Randy and Malcolm on the freeway is good news for LEAF owners, and range could be even higher at lower speeds. The quick charge at Quality Nissan also reinforces the advantages of Level 2 charging over a regular outlet if you ever need a quick top-up.

Having just seen an electric car range record and the early impressions of both Chevy Volt and now Nissan Leaf owners, 2011 is already turning out to be an exciting year for the electric car.