I got to speak with the owner of my local Nissan dealership tonight, wow. If you're looking for an EV friendly dealer who is interested in progressing the EV movement don't look in Selinsgrove PA.
This dealer is under new ownership in the last year or so and will be selling the Leaf this year. They installed a charger outside that has been turned off. I stopped and talked to a salesman who was very nice and interested in the Leaf, I took him for a ride. I tried to make my point to him that having the charger available 24/7 is, in my view, essential to convincing potential customers that the car will have sufficient range and won't leave them stranded. He seemed to understand the point I was trying to make. I asked him to talk to the owner and I would check back.
There are no other chargers in this area so I feel it's up to the dealers to get the ball rolling with this and lead by example.
When I talked to the salesman a week or so later he said the owner told him it would only be on for customers who bought there, which of course means don't stop by after hours.
So you want 30k for a car with 75 miles of range can only be pushed to the edge from 9 to 5?? Good luck selling that to the masses.
So anyhow, the owner may be under the impression that I just want to steal his electricity. His first comment was pretty much my customers buying a gas car don't ask me to fill up their tank for free. He then stated how much the electricity costs and that they would charge up a car if it was in for service. To say he was not interested in anything I had to say would be an understatement. He then went on to question how could they charge everyone for free with the few dollars he may make on each car? I told him if that was his outlook on it he won't be selling many and wished him luck.
Some of the points I would have brought up if he was interested would be.
Possibly, they may have to look at the EV market as more of a long term investment rather than a quick return on pumping out a few cars, this market will take time and effort to develop.
Having their charger on 24/7 will help to give their customers a sense of security (no matter how false) and make the car appear much more useful. I believe they also have to sell potential customers on the idea that there will be more charging stations available in the future. I'm not sure how you convey that when you keep yours turned off. I found the story about Japan in this article very interesting. Basically stating that readily available charging can almost double the usable range of an EV almost WITHOUT ever using that available charging.
http://www.greencarreports.com/news/108 ... e-thoughts
The goodwill and potential customers on their lot is worth far more than the cost of the electricity. They must spend tens of thousands of dollars a year to advertise to people that will never set foot on their lot.
I’ve been in the automotive field all of my life and would like to see these cars succeed. I had hoped to give the owner at least some information to consider and hopefully help them get off to a good start. You would think that it may be worth a few minutes of their time to discuss a new product they will be carrying with someone who has owned one for almost a year and 17,000 miles.
I don’t mean to trash this dealer, but as I‘ve said before, I think it is of the utmost of importance that Nissan dealers have their chargers available for peace of mind of Nissans customers.
If you need a charge in Selinsgrove PA, I’m only 7 miles away and you can charge here for free, I’m on plug share. It doesn’t even matter if you didn’t buy your car here.