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Discussion Starter #1
Hi there,

My name is Craig & I recently acquired a 2013 ex demo leaf. So far I'm loving it.

I picked it up last Friday from Marshalls Nissan in Bury St Edmunds. As I live in Cardiff, it was quite a trek!

My first charging stop was Milton Keynes IKEA, and it was nice to bump into Paul & Abi there. I might have caused the very first 'charging queue' at that station :)
 

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Hello Craig!

Glad you found us here, was really odd but nice to run into another LEAF driver at the charge point. You should get yourself an IKEA card, all the free tea and coffee you can drink is available while you charge that way!

When we left the store we bumped into MaddogMK who was also charging, outrageous! Apparently he just missed you.

How was the onward journey?
 

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Hi Craig,

It was nice to meet you. Seriously impressed with your first journey in your new Leaf. I hope it went well.

It would be great if you could let us all know how the distance was and the charge stops too.

Look forward to hearing more from you.

Abi :)
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Ok then - here goes!

here's a shot of the route with stops indicated (the third and final stop at severn view services wasn't really needed, I only stopped there to test it out & cover off the need for extra miles once I got home to show the car off to my girlfriend!).



B = Milton Keynes IKEA (but I had the Glyn Hopkins Nissan dealership as a planned contingency)
C = Fish Brothers Nissan in Swindon

Leg 1 = 75.8 miles with 13% remaining, ambient temp 7c, sector time 1hr 40

I aborted the charge at about 93% as confidence was high following the 1st sector (and I was fed up with waiting!).

Leg 2 = MK IKEA - Fish Brothers: 73.6 miles, ambient temp 8c, sector time 1hr 30 approx.


This leg was a bit more 'squeeky' - with the Leaf sat-nav taking me on a weird and wonderful route that didn't feel right - but I managed to rock up with 9% remaining (after a few prolonged spells at 70mph and some playing around with the eco mode button).

Final leg: Fish Bros - Severn View - 42.8 miles, ambient temp 8c, sector time 40mins approx.

I left Fish Bros. with approx 90% showing, and I decided to 'gun it' for this short hop, staying at 70mph ish for most of the leg. I arrived at Severn View services with 29% remaining. If I'd have backed off I'm sure I would have made it all the way home, especially with the very slow traffic around Newport on the M4. I arrived home at 1800hrs, having left Bury St Edmunds at about 1100. So around 7 hrs all-in - the final stop and traffic artificially exaggerating the total journey time somewhat.

The train from Cardiff to Bury St Edmunds took 5 hrs 20 mins and cost 147.50 as I had to get a peak single. Doesn't really compare to what I paid for the return trip in my new car (6.20 for the bridge!!!).

I learned a hell of a lot about what this car is capable of, and the geek in me really enjoys the planning required for long trips with a limited amount of energy available. I like to pretend I'm creating a flightplan & a lot of the principles of flight planning apply to journey planning in the Leaf - temperature, wind direction, available energy, cruising speed, alternate landing availability (recharging) options... it's good fun!

This car is capable of serious distance if you are willing to allow more time than you would with an ICE :)
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I called Fish Brothers in advance, just after you and I had our chat - they were very accommodating, I did have to go into the dealership to inform them I'd arrived, and a salesperson had to come out and start the machine up with a PIN - the charge unit was exactly the same as an Ecotricity station but my RFID card didn't activate it.

Still, I had a warm waiting room and free coffee while I waited :)
 

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I'm impressed! Thanks for the info Craig.

It certainly sounds like a trip to Wales in the Leaf is in order. :)
 

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Hi Craig and thanks for the update on your return journey. Shame I didn't get to meet you on your return leg, but I met Abi & Paul instead :), maybe another time.

Great writeup, and it'll certainly be useful info for my journey to Bristol early next year, though I understand that there may be a new rapid charger installed on the M4 now in the Moto services (wherever that is?) - to save going to Swindon.

So the real question to the doubters, was the extra 1 hour 40 minutes travelling time (well, resting time & drinking time), really worth the £141.30 saving :D
 

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Hi Craig and thanks for the update on your return journey. Shame I didn't get to meet you on your return leg, but I met Abi & Paul instead :), maybe another time.

Great writeup, and it'll certainly be useful info for my journey to Bristol early next year, though I understand that there may be a new rapid charger installed on the M4 now in the Moto services (wherever that is?) - to save going to Swindon.

So the real question to the doubters, was the extra 1 hour 40 minutes travelling time (well, resting time & drinking time), really worth the £141.30 saving :D
I'm sure you've experienced the same thing as me. People want to talk about the Leaf when they see it on charge, and the same questions are asked, usually in the same order:

1. how far on a full charge?
2. how much does it cost to charge?
3. how fast can it go?

To be fair, I'm still struggling to get my head around the realities of EV ownership. I've done 1400 miles in 16 days and I haven't paid a penny in fuel. It's absolutely bonkers. We're conditioned to just accept paying astronomical prices for our need to get around in a car.

By the time you make your journey, hopefully the Leigh Delamere eastbound services rapid will be up and running... it's been up and down like a yo-yo over the last few weeks :(
 

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Outstanding first run in your Leaf. We have had ours for 3 weeks now, and like you, we are struggling to get our heads around the cost savings of running an EV. 500 miles in and has cost us about £8 in electricity, or about the cost of 1.5 gallons of dinosaur juice. Looking forward to our first long trip, in laws live 200 miles away in East Sussex, so will have to try this one soon!
 

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I think we are all stunned by your 'out of the showroom' boldness. An excellent demo of how (late 2013) you can go most places in UK by EV, with minimal hassle! It was 'throwing down the gauntlet' to all those sitting on the 'EV Fence'! Yet again boldness brings success!
I personally like the connection to FPL - same issues with a 'float plan'! Know your performance, know your constraints and work within! If you keep 'diversion fuel' then the probability I'd you will make your Dest. on ETA.
Drive ON!
 

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Very friendly security lady at Ikea on nights, guided us in the other day when we stopped back from the stables for a fast charge having never been there didnt know where it was? pretty safe place at night with cameras and a security guard too.
 

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Just found this post. Craig you have bigger gonads than me lol, i bought my leaf from Renault Nissan in Bolton done the deal over the phone, didnt see the car just a video and a pic,they delivered free of charge to Basingstoke about 252 miles and took my wifes renault megane in part ex, great people to do business with.
 

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I have done over 5400 miles in my zoe now, ...
Savings are mad!
I confess to having done 18,000 miles in my first year! A a full month was spend out of the country! Once you realise you can go anywhere in the country - for free - its a drug!
For people who come later to the EV market - the return on investment (ROI) is going to be harder to find!
Mmmm I think I'll head off to Scotland and see if things are better (or worse) than last year! Coming soon in glorious Technicolour!
 
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