It was terrific to see the attention Tom Keane paid to the all-electric Tesla in the May 21 op-ed “An electrifying ride.” The article noted that electric cars emit no tailpipe emissions, far fewer greenhouse gas emissions, and are eligible for a $7,500 tax credit from the federal government. The transportation sector contributes more than a third of greenhouse emissions in the Commonwealth, and emissions from this sector are growing faster than any other. While we must do more to encourage people to walk and bike and take public transit, the fact is that people will continue to drive. So, we must ensure that those vehicles are as clean as possible. Electric vehicles fit the bill.
My one major quibble with the article is over the short shrift paid to the Chevy Volt and the Nissan Leaf. Keane calls them “disappointing” and “uninspired and a little bleak.” That viewpoint is not reflected in the January 2013 Consumer Reports, which revealed that the Chevy Volt received the highest score of any vehicle in any class in an owner-satisfaction survey. When asked whether they would buy their same vehicle if they had to do it over again, 92 percent of Volt owners said yes. Nissan Leaf came in third in the small-car category, with 86 percent saying they would purchase their same vehicle again.