As most of you know, I have both a Nissan Leaf and a Vauxhall Ampera. Until recently I have been forced to use the Ampera for any trip that went outside the range of the Leaf because the rapid charger network was not available. But in the past few months Ecotricity has been installing rapid chargers like they are going out of fashion and I can now use my Leaf past Exeter as there is a rapid charger there… that is providing they are working.
I have a trip I need to do tomorrow from my home in Saltash, Cornwall to Reading in Berkshire. Although I have the Ampera I naturally thought why not do it in the Leaf now that there are rapid chargers up the M5 and all the way to London on the M4? So I arranged for me to have charging at my hotel in Reading and planned to do the trip in the Leaf.
All this planning came to a sudden end 2 days ago when two of the chargers I need to complete the trip broke… Exeter and Leigh Delamere. I have left it to the last minute tonight to make the decision as to whether I can take the Leaf but it looks tonight that they are still out so I shall have to take the Ampera tomorrow.
So I say to anyone considering getting a BMW i3… get the REx option. Sure, it is quite a bit extra but you will not regret it when rapid chargers break down or are occupied… as will be the case more and more from now on as the rapid charge network gets busier and busier – that is when it is working at all!