Ugly and Uncomfortable, but the Range Ain’t that Bad
By Zack Klapman
Ah range. The first question/complaint/insult/scoff that occurs when you talk electric vehicles. It can be a nice, friendly, “What’s the range?” or a snorted, “What’s the range?” , backed with the hypothetical idea of said cynic driving across the country, even though they refuse to move out of the town they were born in. “Whatever. The point is I could if I wanted to.”
For a lot of people it’s a valid concern. We wouldn’t be able to get by with an electric camera truck. We frequently haul gear over 400 miles in a single day, and there’s not an EV on the market that could do it. But when we’re not on a shoot, we all travel about 10-30 miles per day, combined.
What brought this up was TTAC‘s jet-setting industry analyst Bertel Schmidt, who went to Nissan to drive their new 1.5-person electric conveyance, the NMC (New Mobility Concept). (I love how small, electric concepts always have long multi-adjective names. “This is the our next idea for personal mobility. It looks like an airplane wash sink. We call it the Hyper Personal Assistant of Frontal Transportation. But the production name will probably be, Bitsy, because it’s cuter.”)
The NMC is just a Renault Twizy with Nissan stuff on it. If you want the specifics check out Bertel’s quick but informative article. Basically the same thing Chris Harris drove around.
He seemed to enjoy driving it quite a bit.
After reading this, and seeing a range of “only” 62 miles, I thought about where I went today. The bank, and Ralph’s. Total distance: 6.6 miles. The farthest place I go regularly is the gym; distance: 15 miles. I know that not everyone has the same schedule and commute as me, but a LOT of people that live in and around cities could get by on 62 miles. The Twizy/NMC is tiny, ugly, has no doors, and is probably not that safe. I wouldn’t drive my kids to school in it. But for daily tasks, it zips around like a golf course on a studio lot. Taking Matt’s Raptor for small errand just feels silly. You can park an NMC anywhere, it will cost almost nothing to operate, and will probably last for decades.
For some people 62 miles and minimal passenger/cargo room is useless. Fine. I accept that. But for many I bet this would actually be the perfect vehicle for day-to-day stuff. Ugly, slow, feature-less, the curb appeal of a corpse, all true. But convenience and cheap operation can put quite a smile on your face. Ask anyone who owns a Vespa or a motorcycle.
And since it’s ugly, you won’t give a shit about it. And that’s worth a lot too.
Source: The Truth About Cars