Monday, October 24, 2011

New York City National Plug-In Day EVent!

A Chevy Volt, a Nissan LEAF, my MINI-E, a Tesla Roadster & a Plug-in Prius in succession 

Sunday, October 16th, 2011 marked the first National Plug-In day in America. Events were held in 29 different cities across America to celebrate the fact that the OEM's are finally giving us a choice in what fuel we choose to use for our personal transportation. We can finally choose domestically produced electricity over foreign oil and that was reason to celebrate.

The T-shirts made for the event trumpet "Welcome to the Free World"! As someone who drives an electric car and powers it with electricity I produce from my solar array on the roof of my home, I can really appreciate that statement. It's really liberating knowing I drive my car on sunshine, and in doing so I don't send my hard earned money to foreign regimes(many of which hate America), my vehicle is truly a zero emission vehicle, and last but not least, I'm saving a lot of money on fuel.

There were 20 electric vehicles in attendance including Michael Thwaite's Tesla(parked next to my MINI-E), Douglas Stansfield's Plug-in Prius, a LEAF, many volts (including one used by the NYPD), electric motorcycles, a converted Mazda, a Ford Transit Connect electric delivery van, and a few electric trucks. Clipper Creek, an EVSE manufacturer was also there.

Nate Pinsley addresses the crowd
According to Nate Pinsley, the event organizer, we had 1,200 visitors and 38 volunteers(including me) and had five hours of nothing but EV talk and demonstrations. Michael Thwaite had his Tesla Roadster parked next to my MINI-E and we were both barely able to talk by the end of the afternoon. We had talked to so many people all afternoon we were exhausted by the 4:00 end of the event. Michael and I frequently attend EV events so we are quite used to this kind of demonstration, but this was bigger than what we are used to doing and there were more people that had EV questions here, so we really didn't have a break all afternoon.

It was a great day, the first National Plug-in Day ever, with many more to come. In fact, we are going to start planning National Plug-in Day 2012 soon as with more and more EV's on the road, the event will certainly grow each year. I'll be at the 2012 event with my BMW ActiveE, and by then LEAF's will be available in the NY/NJ market as will be Ford Focus EV's and Mitsubishi i's. The electric car movement is certainly gaining ground, and the level of interest from the people that attended the event was really fantastic. Events like this really help the public get over any initial fears they may have about EV's. Talking to people like and Michael and I that have lived with electric cars for over two years really helps people realize that an electric car can work, and maybe is the right choice for them.


  1. Tom: It certainly sounds like it was a great exposition. It looks like you had the only mini e there, are there not that many left in service in New York?

  2. The volt cruiser looks cool :)