Saturday, August 11, 2012

I Feel Special: Changing the world one BMW at a time.

Driving the E around nearly everyday makes me feel…well…special.  Sounds strange, I know, but it’s true.  Just look at this thing:

It tends to stand out in a crowd.  It’s quieter, faster, and has more circuit graphics per square inch than most cars.  And when driving it, I can go anywhere, including the carpool lanes, the toll lanes without paying, and special little EV parking spots created just for me (I let other EVs use them too, but I know they did it for me).  Does this make me a self-centered, egotistical, EV snob?  Yes, yes it does.
I wasn’t always this way.  In fact, before the E nearly every car I owned was black.  I would have gotten along fine with Henry Ford (who famously said you can buy a Model T in any color you want, so long as it’s black—thanks Henry, exactly the color I had in mind). 
But when you drive around in an electric car that looks different, sounds different, and does everything a gas-powered car can do only better, you start to get accustomed to standing out. 
So on those unfortunate days when I am forced to drive my ICE’d vehicles (I’m still learning how to share the E with my wife, it’s been a tough lesson to learn), I suddenly feel not so special at all.  I am no longer quiet, I can’t accelerate quickly and effortlessly.  I don’t have any circuit graphics, or special emblems.  I can’t travel in the carpool lanes, I have to pay for toll roads, and there are no special parking spots for a GMC Yukon.  My fame fades quickly. 
I could have had the circuit graphics taken off the E when I received it.  Some Active E drivers did so, and I can understand why.  But the whole point of the car, or at least our point in getting the car, was to show others that EVs are real.  They can do everything a gas-powered car can do on a daily basis, only do it better, faster, quieter, and far cheaper (See fellow Active E driver Peder’s post on how EVs really are cheaper).  For me, this is about raising awareness so EV acceptance can spread far and wide.  The more people embrace EVs the better.

The unintended side effect is that I feel oh so special driving the E.  But what's the harm in feeling good about doing good?

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