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With a 100% electric car like the Nissan Leaf you MUST charge. Charging becomes the focus of your driving life and you are constantly aware of the state of charge, estimated range and you always know where you will be charging next. It must be like that or else the car runs out of charge and stops!

With a hybrid (Prius, Insight etc) you cannot plug in and so charging is not an issue at all. You just drive it and hope that the small battery and EV system helps with fuel consumption. The evidence I have seen from the Prius is that it doesn't help much, if at all, but let's save that for another thread ;)

With the Ampera/Volt things are different. You can charge and yet you don't have to charge. This got me thinking. When you are on a trip do/will you look for places to charge at all? Will you deliberately seek out charging oppoertunities even though charging for 30 mins to an hour will only add 5-10 miles (7-15 miles at 16A), or will you just accept that once the charge is gone then it becomes a petrol car until you get back home?

Having had a Nissan Leaf for a year I am not sure what I shall do yet. I am used to seeking out charging but one of the benefits of the Ampera is that it frees me up from having to do so. It becomes like driving a petrol car but with the added benefit of some electric only at the start of the journey.

I can't see myself charging much away from home even with the Ampera but I might be wrong.

What are you doing if you already have a Volt or Ampera?

What will you do when you get a Volt or Ampera?
 

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To be fair I don't believe that we will be deliberately going somewhere just to charge - ie the Little Chef and the rip off that is the Polar network...

The joy of this car is the ability to drive from outside London to our favourite Cornish holiday spot without the need to stop every 50'ish miles for a 4+ hour charge.

However if there is a charger in a location close to our destination the we would use it to "top-up".
 
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