You know that auto manufacturers are running low on names for new cars when Nissan rolls out a model called the Leaf. What’s next, the Twig? The Stem?
But all-electric vehicles like the Leaf look like the shape of things to come. With federal tax credits, this car will cost about $25,000 in the United States.
Electric autos are becoming a factor in the Northwest Power and Conservation Council forecast of power demand in Washington, Oregon, Idaho and western Montana. Two council members, Dick Wallace and Tom Karier, were in today to talk about the agency’s new power plan, which leans very heavily toward conservation.
We asked them about electric cars. It turns out the Big Plan estimates that Northwesterners may purchase as many as 3.4 million such vehicles by 2030.
The low-end estimate was 633,000 purchases. But a Leaf – which would probably be recharged at night with less expensive off-peak power – might cost the electric equivalent of $1-a-gallon to drive, said Karier. With the price of gas inevitably headed back to and beyond that nightmarish $4 a gallon level we saw in 2008, we’re going to see millions, not thousands, of electrics on the road.