National Drive Electric Week: An Ode to Electric Vehicles

Nissan-Nismo, nismo, electric vehicle

Next week is National Drive Electric Week! EV drivers will be setting out for events throughout the country to celebrate electric vehicle adoption! Long Beach held a large event at Palm Beach Park last year where many enthusiasts and manufacturers offered free test drives. Even Irvine-based Pedego Bikes offered their electric bikes  for a test drive around the beach.

There are many events across Southern California this year. Some regular auto clubs are inviting EV’s to their regular meetings and at the bottom of the page, you’ll find our favorite events for National Drive Electric Week for the Los Angeles area.

Special Offer for EV Drivers

Nissan Leaf's Ready for a Test Drive at Last Year's  Event
Nissan Leaf’s Ready for a Test Drive at Last Year’s Event

The automobile has been around for over a century so where have all the electric vehicles been hiding? Aside from the EV1’s hiding in the desert, they’ve had a similar history to solar power. Did you know solar panels and electric vehicles are best friends? Packed together, they make an unstoppable machine. Literally, solar planes, trains, and automobiles power themselves for months on end. If you are producing power from the sun, your EV is not only using super clean energy to move, but the cost for fuel is $0.00 a gallon!

 The EV’s Shocking History

Edison & Detroit Electric Car in 1913
Edison & Detroit Electric Car in 1913

PV (Photovoltaic Solar) & EV history shares the same sad start. Both technologies were originally explored in the 19th century. They both saw interest after the Oil Embargo, but didn’t start gain headway until the 1990’s. But EV’s were stillborn due to efforts by the auto/oil/bureaucrats’ efforts to squash their “new” technology by convincing enough people we didn’t need them. Even when EV’s gained mandatory traction, GM violated the basic kindergarten rule of “No Take Backs” and piled their EV1’s in the desert. If you’re looking for a tear-jerker, I’d recommend watching the documentary, “Who Killed The Electric Car?”  However! EV’s are back with a vengeance, which is probably best captured by their sequel, “Revenge of the Electric Car!


cars. When a manufacturer makes a product, they need to continue to produce those parts. It was easier for GM to collect and demolish the EV1’s. The Toyota Rav4 EV was a great success that Southern California Edison continues to use them as service vehicles.

We’re Ready Now!

Wipe those tears! They’re back!

The experience of an electric car has greatly improved, as well. With lighter materials for EV’s, luxuries like a backseat can now be seen in modern electric cars!  (The EV1 was a sporty 2-seater) The lighter materials and better motors have also meant our EV’s are much faster! Tesla’s Model S boasts a speedy 0-60 in 5.4 seconds and a top speed of 125 mph! The turtle-like EV1 clocked in at a steady 9 seconds in its 0-60 and was limited to 80 mph. The EV1 also had this ridiculous digital dashboard! Almost as crazy as a 17-inch tablet for a dashboard! EV1’s should be compared to regular EV’s and not a luxury Tesla Model S. The one’s that only cost one year’s college tuition instead of a whole degree. The Nissan Leaf & Mistubishi iMiEV boast a speedy 0-60 in 10 & 13 seconds, respectively. Leaving the EV1 in the dust… oh wait.

It’s Time to Embrace

All passive aggressiveness aside, it’s time to embrace the industry. The fact that most auto manufacturers now have an electric or hybrid option makes it easy.  The fact that it came ten years after General Motors killed the electric car (Spoiler to the aforementioned documentary!) was not soon enough. Elon Musk may be headed to the bank, but I’m just on my way in our solar powered Volt.


Things were done in the past that hurt the industry, but Tesla is disrupting the auto industry they tried to protect. Business as we know it has changed. EV’s, like solar, have introduced different utility rate structures as well. Your utility really prefers if you charge your car at night when it’s cheapest for them to produce power. Southern California Edison’s domestic electric vehicle TOU-rate structure (TOU-D-TEV) charges five times more for electricity during the day than at night. This goes great with solar because it’s only producing during that 5X period! Remember, your EV is only as green as your grid. If you actually want a green EV, you need to go solar or wind.


Special Offer for EV Drivers


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Photo Credit: Wikipedia Commons, AMECO Collection

Upcoming Local Electric Vehicle Events:

September 20

21500 Pacific Coast Highway

Huntington Beach, CA 92648

September 16

365 Portola Plaza

Los Angeles, CA 90095

September 20

21865 Copley Drive

Diamond Bar, CA 91765