Electric Car Owners Fight Like Children On The Internet Just Like The Rest Of Us

The debate over how far you can drive in an electric car is one that will likely take years to resolve, if ever. Think of it as a modern day equivalent of the '60s horsepower wars, or the U.S.-Soviet nuclear arms race — only not that badass.

The rivalries between EV owners can spark some pretty intense arguments amongst electric car-hating world killers and quaalude-popping yogurt eaters, and along with the new concept of electric car range as competition has come the ability to lob insults from the relative safety of a computer that's presumably miles and miles away from whoever you're dissing (something every online journalist in the world is familiar with).


We found this spat about Nissan Leaf range on a electric car forum, and it's got the same vitriol as a showdown over turbochargers. And who said hypermiling wasn't masculine?

It all started with ex-EV1 driver's claim that in the real world — the one with extreme temperatures, crappy driving, and unintended delays — you can only drive a Leaf 27 miles on a charge. He goes on to lambaste hypermiling aficionado Paul Scott, a SoCal Nissan Leaf specialist and environmental advocate who has been singing the car's praises from the slow lane on I-10 (actually the truck lane, he says).

I've been giving a lot of thought to the fact that Nissan clearly fell short of expectations with the Leaf's range. While I blame it heavily on being oversold by the likes of my well-intentioned yet dangerous friend Paul Scott who can't keep quiet about the "100 mile range" that he gets while crawling 28 miles each day in the slow lane, in the temperate west side of LA, proudly hypermiling.


Paul Scott wasted no time chipping in his two cents on the discussion, offering a few statistics, some personal anecdotes, and a witty quip or two.

Just because most people drive inefficiently, doesn't mean it's a good thing to do. Americans are known the world over as being wasteful. Some of you wear that badge proudly. I'm curious why that is. Waste is always bad in my book, whether it's gasoline, kWh or food. There are consequences to wasting energy, and they are all bad. People are hurt by the pollution, the wars we fight to keep our tanks full of cheap gas, and our environment suffers. So, maybe ex EV1 Driver can tell us why wasting is a good thing. I'd love to hear his or her reasoning.

You may, of course, continue in your hateful ways. Some people just can't help themselves. But if you ever get over yourself, please do join us and help make the world better instead of bitter. You'll like yourself more that way.


Touché, mon ami, touché. But ex-EV1 driver isn't content to let Paul Scott have the last laugh.

@Paul Scott, Why do you have to resort to attacking me personally when you haven't even responded to which of my numbers is wrong? Also, 250 customers in a metropolitan area of about 15 million people really isn't very good penetration. How many of your customers were normal customers who walked into the dealership and how many were already members of your quaalude popping yogurt and granola club?

I'll believe Paul Scott doesn't care about speed when he walks to work. Until then I'll just assume he smugly thinks he's better than everyone else who passes him. Who makes this stuff up for you? Do you write your own stuff? Why do you assume people who need to get places want to waste their battery's life?


Whoa whoa whoa now! This is starting to sound like a contest between two 12-year-old boys over whose M-4 replica is more lifelike. Luckily, the discussion benefitted from a moderator or two. Weston LeMay offered these middle ground words of advice:

As with most things, I think the truth is somewhere in the middle. First, people shouldn't condescend with regards to 'ex EV-1 driver' just because he's raining on the Leaf parade. Comments about whether or not he is hateful are not relevant and against site policy.


There are even some side arguments, which you should definitely check out if you don't have anything better to do. Or maybe instead, you can spice up the argument by adding to it here on Kinja with a few quips of your own.

Photo credit: Associated Press

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