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Plugged In to the Future of Autombiles | The Vineyard Gazette – Martha’s Vineyard News

Twenty miles per hour. That’s how fast Paul Pimentel has to drive in order for his 2012 Nissan Leaf to make a sound. This car is quiet. Oddly quiet. The Nissan Leaf is a battery-operated electric vehicle. There is no noisy internal combustion engine. Instead, it runs on a 24 kilowatt-hour pack of lithium-ion batteries located below the seats of the car. There is also a 12-volt, lead-acid battery to power the accessories — lights, heated seats and power steering wheel, radio, navigation system — and this gets more support from a photovoltaic solar panel on the roof. “Other than that, the car pretty much looks like any other car,” Mr. Pimentel said. Mr. Pimentel bought his plug-in car in July of last year. Since then he has put 5,400 miles on it. It just passed its first inspection on the Island. The Nissan Leaf currently retails for about $22,000, after federal tax credits. “Think about this, no oil, no combustion engine, what could go wrong? It’s really pretty basic.” Quietness and low mileage were perks to purchasing an all-electric vehicle. “It’s energy efficient and environmentally friendly,” he said. – See more at:


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