NextRideNS brings electric vehicle experience right to your driveway

NextRideNS brought the electric vehicle experience right to Lisa’s driveway. She also got to pepper Brendan Piper, test-drive host, with questions. You can, too!

 

“Your Tesla test drive is here!”

I looked out my office window and saw the CAA-emblazoned Tesla Model 3 sedan sitting in our driveway. Grabbing my wallet, phone and mask, I stepped out the front door to meet Brendan Piper from NextRideNS.

Next Ride is not a car company.

NextRideNS is a not-for-profit low carbon transportation initiative set up to help Nova Scotians discover all the ways electric vehicles have improved, become more versatile and more affordable than ever.

In normal times, the Next Ride team would be touring the province to share the excitement of an electric ride.

But 2020 has changed so much in the way we do things, including Next Ride’s methods of sharing the EV experience.

Instead of attending events and exposing the public to the charms of electric vehicles, the organization created an online booking platform that brings the EV test drive to you.

The Tesla Model 3 is owned by CAA and available for test drives at NextRideNS.

 

Next Ride has reached into 35 communities in Nova Scotia since 2019, bringing test drives of electric vehicles to about 5,600 Nova Scotians to date.

Besides the Tesla Model 3 in my driveway, Next Ride has a Chevrolet Bolt EV and a Hyundai Kona electric, all viable choices on the market, and all around the same starting MSRP.

The Chevrolet Bolt EV, known as Zevvy, is also available for test drives at NextRideNS.

 

Next Ride, Clean Foundation and EVAssist all support each other in bringing clean energy education and experiences to Nova Scotians

NextRideNS is supported by the Clean Foundation, a Nova Scotia-based independent, non-governmental environmental charity.

Clean Foundation’s mission is to help home owners build more energy-efficient homes, to help teachers educate their students on how to be environmentally proactive and to promote cleaner transportation, to name but a few of its goals.

In the area of transportation, besides Next Ride, the Foundation also supports EVAssist, an all-in-one resource for Nova Scotians who want to know more about electric vehicles, clearing up common misconceptions about the technology.

All of these organizations collaborate with each other to present a complete picture of what owning an electric vehicle in Nova Scotia is like day-to-day.

Lisa trying out the back seat in the Tesla Model 3 during her test drive. (She wasn’t driving at the time!)

 

It’s really happening. The future of transportation is here.

Sales of EVs in N.S. are up 368 per cent, just in the last year!

Nova Scotia has over 100 charging stations for electric vehicles throughout the province. There are over 35 different models of electric vehicles available here.

Enough numbers, already! Let’s get into this cool, quiet Tesla Model 3 and go for a spin.

Brendan explained the features of the Tesla and we hit the road.

While I drove, I peppered Brendan with questions, about how electric vehicles work, about how our electricity sources in Nova Scotia are getting cleaner, about how driving an EV is more affordable than people think.

Electric vehicles today are reaching ranges of 400 kilometres and more. With an average daily commute of 65 kilometres (for many Nova Scotians) and more workplaces installing EV chargers, the dreaded ‘range anxiety’ disappears.

EVs will charge overnight by plugging into a wall socket. Fast-chargers reduce charging times significantly.

 

EVs are more affordable to buy and run than people think… and they are so fun to drive!

A lot of Nova Scotians think EVs are too expensive to buy, but many have reasonable price tags. Chevrolet Bolt EV, Tesla Model 3 and Hyundai Kona electric all start at $45,000. And the cost to run and maintain an EV over time is significantly lower than a gas-powered vehicle.

Purchasing a used electric vehicle is also an option. Check out our friends at AllEVCanada.com to explore this possibility.

With so many things to discuss, I forgot what I was driving as I merged onto the highway.

Whoa!

Acceleration in an electric vehicle is a thrill. The instant torque rockets you forward in an eerie silence and as fast as many supercars.

The clean, peaceful cabin and all of the cool features, including autosteer which will steer the vehicle and maintain your lane, made the Tesla Model 3 a joy to drive.

My favourite feature? Dog Mode. Dog mode leaves the car’s climate control on when owners leave their pets in their Tesla. You simply select the feature in the climate control settings and a message is displayed on Tesla’s large centre screen that reads: “My owner will be back soon. Don’t worry! The temperature is at XX degrees.” Brilliant.

 

I love the fact that I was driving without emitting fossil fuels into the atmosphere.

I also love the fact that I was driving the future. Now.

After an hour tearing up the roads of HRM, sadly, it was time to get back to my driveway.

What a ride! And what a way to experience what driving an electric vehicle is really like. Thanks, Brendan and NextRideNS, for providing me and other Nova Scotians this opportunity, right at my doorstep.

All I had to do was go to the NextRideNS.com website, click on Test Drive and book an appointment.

You really should give an EV a try. It’s electrifying.

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