Renting a gas car a reminder of how fun EVs are — and how we need more people to test drive electric cars!

2017 Chevy Bolt parked at Highwood Auto Body in Englewood, Colo.
My 2017 Chevy Bolt at Highwood Auto Body in Englewood, Colo. It’s in the shop for two weeks to repair $6,000 worth of hail damage. [Photo by Christof Demont-Heinrich]
editors-blog-entry3So, my 2017 Chevy Bolt is in the body shop for two weeks thanks to getting blasted by a hail storm that caused $6,000 worth of damage to it while it was parked at Denver International Airport (DIA) over Memorial Day Weekend.

That means I am going to have to suffer in a lame gas car rental for the next 14 days.


It could be a lot worse: I could be one of those millions of people who continue to drive lame gasoline cars never having been exposed to the joys of electric cars, which, on the whole, are A LOT quicker — and WAY MORE FUN to drive — than their gas car counterparts.

Take my own case: My gas car rental = a run-of-the mill Chevy Cruze. It’s made by the same company as my Chevy Bolt. But, boy oh boy, the cars could not be further apart in terms of their driving fun level!

My Bolt goes 0 to 60 m.p.h. in 6.3 seconds. The Chevy Cruze version I have takes 11.8 seconds. What. A. Drag.

Like, totally! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Changing lanes, merging safely onto a crowded highway, trying to get over into a right, or left, lane on a multi-lane road to take a right or left turn — all of these things are a drag, a serious drag, in my, thankfully temporary ICE tortoise, the Cruze.

Chevy Cruze = “Turtle” Car
Seriously, this thing is a true turtle. I jerk automatically into turtle neck position when I need to “punch it” in my Cruze rental, as I unconsciously lean forward in the hopeless hope that doing so will somehow make this damn car move faster.

Seriously, folks, what is the fun in driving something like that!?

In fact, it is NO fun to drive laggard gas cars. Zero fun.

That’s why my attitude toward driving — which had been gradually been getting more and more negative as I grew older and my pre-electric car, my 1992 Acura Integra, grew older, and the traffic around the Denver area continued to spike thanks to WAY TOO MANY people moving to Colorado ๐Ÿ˜‰ — had been on a steady downward tend.

My sense of driving as fun stayed on a downward trend until I leased a 2014 Nissan LEAF in February 2014. Suddenly, drives that had been a chore, were fun again, and my increasingly negative attitude toward driving took, ahem, a turn for the better ๐Ÿ˜‰

The Chevy Cruze I am renting from Hertz while my 2017 Chevy Bolt is in the shop for hail-damage repair. [Photo by Christof Demont-Heinrich]
For these next two weeks, however, I will suffer like a majority of American drivers do — viewing, and experiencing, driving as a chore, rather than as fun ๐Ÿ™ That’s because driving most ICEs IS a chore and they make driving seem like a chore.

Yes, some ICEs are quick and fun. But most Americans do not drive/own this type of ICE, and, furthermore, the electric counterparts to these “quicker” ICEs are, in fact, quicker, and, I would submit, more fun to drive, than those “fun” ICEs!

Slogging around in my rented Chevy Cruze is a great reminder of how fun it is to drive electric, and how fortunate I am to have driven 100 percent electric for the past five and a half years.

EVs are cleaner
During that time, I have been powering both my 2014 Nissan LEAF and then my 2017 Chevy Bolt with electricity generated at least indirectly by renewable energy and sometimes directly by renewable energy.

That EVs are MUCH cleaner than gasoline cars, especially when they are powered by 100 percent renewable energy generated electricity, is yet ANOTHER advantage of electric cars hold over gas cars.

But, to return to the question of fun — or lack thereof — when driving a car: It’s not just the immediate torque and the scorching quickness of electrics that makes them way more fun to drive than ICEs. They are also quieter and smoother.

They’re also way less of a chore to fuel, assuming you have a place to plug in at home, which many, though not all, people have. Just plug in over night, and you’re good to go in the morning. No pumping gas in below zero temps and driving wind and snow, no more gripping on that self-service station gas nozzle in all of its extreme disgustingness!

In fact, as my fortunately short 14 days in an ICE is showing me (1 day down, 13 to go), all it takes is a few days in an electric car such as a Nissan LEAF, a Chevy Bolt, or a Tesla of ANY kind, and the vast majority of people would be converted to electrics. They are that fun to drive!

Sadly, not enough people (at least not in the U.S.) know that electrics are quicker, funner, smoother, cleaner, easier-to-fuel, etc. because not enough Americans have yet (test) driven an electric car.

We need to change that!

More butts in electric car driver’s seat
We need more American butts — of ALL shapes and sizes ๐Ÿ˜‰ — in electric cars for test drives, or, better yet, extended test drives across multiple days.

More electric car test drives would mean more and more EV converts, and fewer and fewer ICEs on the road. That, my friends, would be better for all of us — better for our lungs, better for our health, better for our environment, and, dammit, better for our general societal well-being and mental health, both of which would definitely be “driven” upward if driving were made more fun for more people by way of getting more of us into all-electric cars.

Electric cars definitely make things more fun — as the beginning of my enforced two weeks in a sluggish ICE rental is underscoring — a lot more fun!

So, EV heads, let’s make sure our friends, our neighbors, our co-workers, and everyone we know experience the joy of driving an electric car.

Be sure to “donate” your EV for test drives to as many of our EV-virgins as possible, poor souls who are still unnecessarily suffering behind the wheel of the countless Chevy Cruzes, Ford Escorts, Toyota Corollas and Honda Civics of the world ๐Ÿ˜‰

A gas car rental -- a Chevy Cruze -- parked at Hertz in Englewood, Colo.
My Chevy Cruze rental parked at Hertz in Englewood, Colo. The Cruze, which is deathly slow, is making me miss my all-electric Chevy Bolt. [Photo by Christof Demont-Heinrich]