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Flipping the Switch on an Electric Car

by on September 14, 2017

As part of National Drive Electric week, AEP Ohio is encouraging customers to experience driving an electric vehicle at one of several “ride and drive” events around the state. This article highlights an AEP Ohio customer’s switch to an EV.

A car is one of the most significant purchases we make besides housing. We research, read reviews and test drive vehicles to make sure we’re making the right decision.

When Wendy and Rob Cohen of Columbus were looking to replace their 2002 Toyota Avalon, they knew they wanted to make the leap to an EV. Rob wanted an EV to reduce their carbon footprint. Even taking the impact of electricity production into account, EVs account for fewer carbon emissions than most internal combustion engines.

“Friends of ours had just bought a Nissan Leaf,” Wendy recalled. “We went and took a look at theirs and really liked what we saw.”

A few days later, Wendy and Rob were proud owners of a LEAF. The Cohens used a $10,000 incentive Nissan has made available to AEP Ohio customers on their purchase.

Getting accustomed to the new technology – in-dash GPS, keyless start and other features – was a bigger transition that getting used to driving an EV.

“The biggest adjustment we’ve had to make from a driving standpoint is looking past the prices at the gas station,” Wendy said. “I drive it around town almost every day, and I don’t think I’ve ever gotten below 40 percent on my battery. When I get home, I just plug it in.”

Plugging-in to recharge has become part of her routine. Wendy and Rob opted to use a standard outlet for charging and Wendy says that the battery replenishes overnight. If they installed a higher voltage outlet, it would take just a few hours to top off.

For Wendy, the LEAF is her daily driver, and she said that most weekends, it’s what they choose to drive. There are still some concerns they have. For a recent trip to Cleveland, they opted for their 2002 Camry as opposed to stopping to charge along the way. Other than long trips, you’ll find Rob or Wendy behind the wheel of their LEAF.

So, have Wendy and Rob been converted to EV drivers?

According to Wendy, a Tesla Model 3 is in their future.

“Rob was driving the LEAF everywhere at first. Once we decided on our next purchase, I said ‘Well, I guess the new ones mine when it comes in then.’” He quickly handed her the LEAF keys.

AEP Ohio customers can continue to use Nissan’s $10,000 promotion on 2017 LEAF models through September 30.

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