Monday, October 5, 2009
Alternative Car Expo 09, MINI E get together and ELECTRIC emblems
Had a great time this past Saturday with other MINI E folks checking out the Alternative Car Expo in Santa Monica. Rich Steinberg, Manager of the MINI E program, was there along with some other MINI folks. Rich took the time to visit with all the MINI E drivers and it was great to have him there. He mentioned that the decals should be showing up at the dealers shortly. He also said he understood the interest in extending the leases that many drivers have expressed and that is in discussion. Sounded like a pretty good possibility. He also understands that the price is in issue as well. While he couldn't comment about pricing particulars, my personal opinion is that any lease extension will have a lower lease payment. Current $850.00 payment is based on a closed end 12 month lease. I mentioned to Rich that with a price adjustment, I'm very interested in a lease extension that would perhaps bridge to the next BMW/MINI electric vehicle.
You may have seen other MINI E drivers that have added the word ELECTRIC to their E. Here in the Southern California area many have had it done by Michael Wittman from Third Planet Energy. I was happy to see Michael at the event in Santa Monica and asked him to set me up. You can see the result from the pictures. Before he applied them we measured to make sure that I can still apply the full decal (MINI + the plug symbol) if I wish to both doors. I'm still not sure if we'll go with the full decal or perhaps just the plug centered on each door. Michael can be contacted at www.thirdplanetenergy.com The cost is $40.00 for one or $99.00 for all three. Tax is added and this includes installation.
I'm quickly approaching 7500 miles in #140. At the expo and now hopefully with the ELECTRIC emblems, I'll continue to have more frequent discussions with folks about the E. Along with the talk of range, electricity costs, etc I have to remember to remind folks the central thing about driving the E....the driving experience itself...it's a MINI for heaven's sake. What MINI has done is create something that's Zero Emission but also a blast to drive. Fun, Quick, Earth Friendly, Low fuel costs...just a few words that describe my experience with the E.