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If you've read the latest article from Michael Ramsey in the Wall Street Journal you may have noticed that LeafOwner.com was mentioned! Big thanks to Michael for taking the time to setup a phone call and interview me (Chris Hammond) for his article.

I don't know if the article will be made public or not, right now it's available to subscribers only unless you find it through Google News (though that only works some of the time apparently based on my testing).

Here's a screenshot of the original article (only the section mentioning LeafOwner as I don't want to reproduce the entire article).



And a link to the article itself

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001...

If you are interested in purchasing LeafOwner.com, shoot me an email info at leafowner.com


So here we go, this post has been a week coming, I just haven't had the time do get it together. About a month ago, perhaps a little more, I did something that seemed to upset quite a few people, even apparently some people at Nissan! I posted the opportunity to buy my Nissan Leaf on Ebay. That lasted all of a few minutes, I’m not even sure how long the auction was up 24 hours before I was asked to (or really it was suggested that I ) remove it. So down it came, along with the posts that I had put up announcing it.

What people didn’t know was that I had been posting the Leaf on craigslist here in the bay area for a month or more before it was ever listed on Ebay. I had a few inquiries from the Craigslist ad, though many of those inquiries were just your typical internet trolls complaining. Some even took the time to email me and call me an “Idiot” I appreciate that someone took the time to do that.

So back to Ebay, I pulled the ad, I removed the blog/forum posts, I cleared most of my tracks at the threat of losing the right to purchase the Leaf. I even quit posting the ad on Craigslist. After the ad came down from Ebay people started coming out of the wood work asking to buy the car. Fortunately for me I had lined someone up before I even pulled the Ebay ad down. In fact the ad didn’t even have anything to do with getting rid of my car, the Craigslist ad came through.

What? I thought you purchased the Leaf last week?

Well, technically I did, for a little while anyways. I had a guy fly in from Detroit on Monday of last week, we drove from the airport to the dealer, then the bank, then the dealer again. The dealer wouldn’t take a cashier’s check, so we had to go to the bank and have the money wired from their bank, to the dealer’s bank, which was all of 1 block away. Unfortunately the dealer’s bank became a problem and wouldn’t show the transfer as posting until the following day. So in order for us to drive the car off the lot that day I ended up having to take a loan out on the car as a fall back contract, in case the transfer didn’t go through.

After about 4 hours of things we finally left the dealer, I in my 350z and the new owner in the Nissan Leaf. I didn’t even get to drive the thing! Though I did sit in it a few times

So there it is, I no longer own a 2011 Nissan Leaf? Why might you ask? Well it really doesn’t matter what I say, people are going to hate on me. But here goes my explanation with a little backstory.

Back in April of 2010 I got an email from Nissan announcing the preorder process for the Leaf, I jumped on things and signed up, immediately preordering as soon as I could. Shortly after that I setup www.LeafOwner.com with the thought of creating a website dedicated to the Leaf. I got some good traffic, with the help of some key features on Engadget, AutoBlogGreen and even two different tweets from Lance Armstrong!

I was thrilled at the idea of getting a Leaf, I have an 8-9 mile commute, so it was going to work out perfectly for that. I was one of the first people to get the Aerovironment charger inspections, I asked my landlord if we could get an install going. From there things actually started to sour a bit. I got the charger assessment back and it was for $2200, roughly $800 for the charger/shipping, and then the rest for the installation, for about an hour’s worth of labor and maybe $100 worth of equipment.

As the summer progressed I kept up with the Leaf, attending events to see the car when I could, and then went through the ordering process, that is when things really went south for me. I went ahead and ordered the car, as a lease option, but when I started thinking about it, the lease was going to be $420 a month. I started thinking, 420 a month could go towards a very nice car payment, rather than “renting” a very expensive Nissan Versa.

I’ll take some hits for that, but to me that is what the car ultimately became. It’s an economy sized hatchback, that when fully priced out last week was $38k. While there are lots of cool geeky features in the Leaf, the only real addition above and beyond a Versa was the batteries, the electric aspect. So I decided that the car most likely wasn’t for me.

In October I went to the driving events that Nissan was doing, and that pretty much sealed the deal for me. I drove the car, and after driving corvettes, camaros, and 350zs I just couldn’t see myself driving the Leaf, not at the cost.

I’m a car guy, I always have been, and the later it got into 2010 the more I had the itch to start racing cars again. I am now actively autocrossing my 350z (www.project350z.com). Heck, for the price that the Leaf ultimately cost I could have purchased a brand new 2010 Nismo 370z! Though I didn’t want to do that either, spending more money just wasn’t in the cars right now. My 350z cost me $12k, and that’s a lot smaller car payment than a new Leaf would be, and the car ultimately becomes more useful to me as I can autocross it.

So in the end, to sum things up. The price of the electric car killed it for me. I’m not saying I will never own another Leaf, or an electric car, but right now it just didn’t make sense to me. In the future I do hope to own an electric car, heck maybe I’ll build an electric VB Bug for www.projectvw.com in the future. But for now, I’ll let the early adopters help to bring the price of the electric car down.

For those of you who choose to hate me for that, I am sorry that you feel that way, but that’s the beauty of our wonderful country, everyone gets to have their own opinion.

(if you’re interested in purchasing LeafOwner.com let me know!)

So I got an email from Boardwalk Nissan earlier this week that my car was in! The website said it would show up the week of the 8th, came in early!

I'm going in on Monday afternoon with the money to purchase it. Here are some photos I took of it sitting on the floor today.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/chammond...

2011 Nissan Leaf
2011 Nissan Leaf
2011 Nissan Leaf
2011 Nissan Leaf
2011 Nissan Leaf
2011 Nissan Leaf
2011 Nissan Leaf
2011 Nissan Leaf
2011 Nissan Leaf

So all the details are yet to be published, or even decided based on what I have been told, but we should all plan a little gathering on Saturday in San Francisco, to welcome the first Leaf owner in the world (for a production Leaf, not a preproduction model) who will be getting his Leaf earlier in the day.

Start making plans and be ready to get to meet some very interesting people to ask Leaf questions to! If you're down with going post here, let's get the bay area leaf crowd out in full force! There may even be some swag and food of some sort, no promises though ;)

We'll be gathering around 1:30pm at a location yet to be announced somewhere in the city (SF). I'll have more info by Friday, if not sooner. I'll edit this post with details when available.
So Autoblog is reporting that the first Leaf is going to be delivered in Northern California on Saturday the 11th. Something tells me that is definitely going to happen.

Anyone else got any news?

I wonder who it will be, and what Dealer it will be at?
So for those of you who have been around since the early days of this site (April 2010), you have likely noticed things have died down a bit. That's not because there hasn't been any Leaf news as of late, just that life got in the way! I had my first child a month ago and have been enjoying everything that has brought me. 

I have been logging into the Nissan site every couple of days to see if I had an estimated delivery date, and I'm glad to say that I finally have something! 



The site tells me I should see the Nissan Leaf sometime in the month of January!

So that's exciting, does anyone else have an estimated date yet? If so, when?

I hope everyone got to take part in the Nissan Leaf Driving Tours that are going on, I went to the event in San Jose on the 30th, I took a load of photos, they've been up on the site for a while now, but in case you haven't see them you can find them with the URL below.

http://www.leafowner.com/Pictures/vie...

Nothing like last minute notices..

Today only, from 11am-1pm there will be a Nissan Leaf at Boardwalk Nissan in Redwood City. You can visit, take a look, and I hear even sit in it. I might head down over lunch and take some photos, haven't quite decided yet.

C
Good news today on the Nissan Leaf front! They bowed to the pressure from all of us at LeafOwner.com (kidding of course) and went with a 8yr 100k mile warranty for the leaf!
http://green.autoblog.com/2010/07/27/...


PRESS RELEASE

Nissan Announces National Market Roll-Out Plan for Zero-Emission Nissan LEAF

- More than half of 17,000 reservations located in initial launch markets -

SAN JOSE, Calif., July 27 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Today, nearly 17,000 future Nissan LEAF drivers are learning when the world's first affordable all-electric, zero-emission vehicle will be available in their markets. Consumers who have placed reservations for the Nissan LEAF received a communication today regarding market timing and next steps in ordering the all-electric vehicle.

Nissan LEAF first will be available to consumers in December, in California, Washington, Oregon, Arizona and Tennessee. These areas are home to The EV Project – the largest electric vehicle and infrastructure deployment ever undertaken. The EV Project is a result of a partnership with charging infrastructure provider ECOtality and partially funded by a grant from the U.S. Dept. of Energy. Customers in these first five launch states, who represent more than 55 percent of total Nissan LEAF reservations, will be able to place firm orders for the Nissan LEAF starting in August.

Nissan LEAF will be introduced to Texas and Hawaii shortly thereafter, in January 2011; North Carolina, Florida, Georgia, Washington DC, Virginia, Maryland, South Carolina and Alabama follow in April 2011; and be rolled-out to the balance of the nation beginning in Fall 2011 with availability in all markets nationwide by the end of that year.

"We are pleased to see so many people making a choice for a zero-emission future by placing reservations for the Nissan LEAF," said Brian Carolin, senior vice president, Sales and Marketing, Nissan North America. "Consumer feedback and market readiness have been key drivers in developing our phased rollout. Nissan is able to target areas of customer demand for early launch, while continuing to work in future markets to ensure the continued success of electric vehicles."

Nissan North America also is informing its consumers that the lithium-ion battery pack that powers the Nissan LEAF will carry a warranty of 8 years or 100,000 miles – matching U.S. market competitive conditions.

Consumers who have reserved the Nissan LEAF online will be invited to place orders through their dealer for the vehicle in advance of market roll-out timing, allowing time for consumers to select a dealer and assess home charging needs. Nissan is continuing to take reservations for the Nissan LEAF through its website, www.NissanUSA.com. Interested consumers are encouraged to place a reservation, which entails a $99 fully refundable fee to secure a spot on the list to place an order.

The reservations process has educated Nissan about more than just geographic distribution. Some information we've learned about future Nissan LEAF drivers includes:

* Favorite color: The favorite color of Nissan LEAF owners is blue. More than 30 percent of reservations are for blue Nissan LEAF electric cars. Silver is a close second, at about 26 percent. The remaining reservations are close to evenly split among red, black and white.
* Trim level: About 75 percent of Nissan LEAF orders are for the SL trim level, which adds a rearview monitor, solar panel spoiler, fog lights, and automatic headlights.
* Home and Parking: About 75 percent of people who placed reservations own a single-family home. About 68 percent have attached garages, while an additional 18 percent have detached garages or carports. Home ownership and dedicated parking are important factors for Nissan LEAF drivers who plan to charge their vehicles at home.
* Purchase time: About 67 percent of Nissan LEAF reservations holders have indicated that they'd be ready to purchase or lease a Nissan LEAF within one year of placing the reservation. An additional 24 percent indicated they would be ready in one to two years.
* Interests: Several primary interests are inspiring people to order a Nissan LEAF. Cited interests include energy independence (35 percent); environmental consciousness (34 percent); and cost/fuel economy (20 percent).


In North America, Nissan's operations include automotive design, engineering, consumer and corporate financing, sales and marketing, distribution and manufacturing. Nissan is dedicated to improving the environment under the Nissan Green Program 2010, whose key priorities are reducing CO2 emissions, cutting other emissions and increasing recycling. More information on the Nissan LEAF and zero emissions can be found at www.nissanusa.com.

SOURCE Nissan North America

Nissan sent out an online survey asking about warranty and battery life for the Nissan Leaf.

From reading through the survey it looks like they are considering 5yr/60k warranties, or 8yr/100k warranties.

There is definitely a lot of information in the survey, and they ask a lot of "what would it take to make you not buy a Leaf". I was pretty strict on I won't accept a 5yr/60k mile warranty, I have no interest in the risk of being an early adopter of the Nissan Leaf if they aren't going to back the product with a very rigid warranty. 

Nissan Leaf Survey


Here are a couple more screenshots from the Survey

What was your overall response to the survey? Did you get it today? Did you fill it out? What do you think the Warranty should be?
So today we headed out to the meetup we organized at the LiveStrong event in San Jose, it was a great day catching up with some fellow leaf enthusiasts, I'll have a full review of that event and photos posted later today.

For now though, check out the Nissan Leaf Charger Quote I just received. I got an email saying it was completed, and I was able to login to the Nissan Leaf website to retrieve the quote.

Here are the details.

product/service  total

standard installation  1,296.68

charging dock, wall mount 15' cable *  721.12

installation permit and processing  50.00

shipping and delivery  49.95

permit and inspection fee (level 1 120v/20a) 0.00

sales tax * US$66.70

total US$2,184.45
expires on 12/31/2010

and a screenshot from the website.


http://www.flickr.com/photos/chammond...
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Chris Hammond is a father, husband, leader, developer and car guy. Chris has long specialized in ASP.NET and DotNetNuke development, so you will find a variety of topics here on the website. For more information check out the about me page.

If you are looking for DotNetNuke consulting please visit my business website at https://www.christoc.com/