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The New Autonomous Electric Nissan LEAF (CT Exclusive) | CleanTechnica

Monday night’s email from Nissan inviting me to visit the El Toro Marine Base on Wednesday was too good to be true. Nissan was going to have the new autonomous car, an electric Nissan LEAF, available to drive. Whoops, I guess “drive” is the wrong word. I’ll be driven in it.

As if that weren’t more than enough to convince me to make the long drive into Orange County, they sweetened the offer with the possibility of a test drive in the Nissan Leaf Nismo Race Car. This is a full-out race car with a LEAF power train inside a carbon fiber and aluminum chassis and a seriously tweaked racing suspension.

Of course I’d go.

Since they had a fast charger on site, we didn’t hesitate to take the LEAF on what turned out to be a 150-mile day. With cruise control set, Zan Dubin Scott (my friendly ex) and I headed south on the 405, finalizing plans for our third annual National Plug In Day. We were already excited. That event has climbed to some 90 cities, plus Mexico and Holland.

El Toro is a former Marine Base with an airfield. Much of it is being turned into a large park, but there are many activities of all kinds there, and because of the very large runways, its often used as a location for car companies to conduct test drives.



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