The Nissan LEAF has, rather farcically, been named the 2011 Car of the Year. Despite properly good cars being nominated. The Green Lobby is victorious.
You may remember at the beginning of November we reported that Nissan’s Electric car – the Nissan LEAF – had been nominated for Car of the Year 2011. Which with the LEAF not being available to the public until 2011 and with no feedback whatsoever from its use in the real world, it seemed a very strange event. Which we called stupid. And now it’s just got even more stupid.
The Nissan LEAF is the Car of the Year 2011. It beat off some very good competition – in particular the Citroen DS3 – to be the first electric car to win the coveted title. What a farce.
Now you may think we’re calling it a farce because we are anti electric cars. Not a bit of it. What we are against is car buyers being presented with a car – like the LEAF – which can’t do the job they want. To be fair to Nissan, they are ‘counselling’ prospective LEAF buyers to see if the very modest workable range of the LEAF will work.
Not only are Nissan at pains to ensure prosective buyers aren’t buying in to the LEAF if they ever want to drive more than 40 miles from home, they are even considering offering LEAF owners a free ICE car if they need to go further than just up the road. Which to us says that Nissan know the electric car – any electric car – cannot be considered a replacement for a conventional ICE car for the majority of drivers.
So we have a winner of Car of the Year which the makers are counselling prospective buyers against buying if they ever need to drive more than 40 miles from home. It has a range of around 100 miles if you’re lucky. It take a third of a day to refuel. And it costs far more than any comparable ICE car does to buy. Even after the Government’s misguided £5k allowance.
So on what grounds can it be considered Car of the Year when it does just about everything less effectively than almost any ICE car on the market, never mind those on the shortlist for COTY? Its only USP is it’s cheap to run. But that’s only because Governments haven’t yet got round to taxing electricity for cars in the way they do petrol.
We note that some of the judges had the sense to put the LEAF at the bottom of their voting list; they obviously had similar concerns to ours. But it seems the green lobbyists won out.
Which is worse than stupid. It’s a joke.