Originally published on CleanTechnica.
I met Tom standing by his cool, black Nissan LEAF the first time I charged up our Nissan LEAF at a charging spot in town. I had just signed up for a ChargePoint card, and did not have it yet, so was calling to have the charger activated. Tom swiped his card and activated the charger for me. From that point on, I relied on him for almost all my new electric car driver questions. Due to his Nissan LEAF and Uber, Tom saves $500+ a month.
Tom shared that he uses his Nissan LEAF for work (as an Uber driver) as well as personal transport. He appeared to me as the experienced Uber driver one would have good luck to choose. Tom’s pleasantly intelligent yet mellow personality puts one at ease. He is conversational, with a laid-back, easy-to-trust, and enjoyable style.
Tom explained how he got into driving for Uber around a year ago. “My work with the photo industry was ebbing, after moving back to Sarasota from New York City. There wasn’t the kind of work I did in New York locally in Sarasota. I was exploring the idea of doing something else, as well. I thought of Uber. I signed up and was approved and driving in a short time — when Uber started in Sarasota last December.”
He needed something to fall back on. Enjoying his artistic way of life, he loves to make his hours, play music at night, and not have to rely on art only for income. The career with Uber took off for him.
Why did he choose the LEAF? “I needed to save more money.” With the Uber gas card, I could track how much money I spent on gas. It was clear that I did not make nearly the money I thought I was once I totaled the gas. I started looking for an electric car online. I saw the LEAF, drove by to see it. I was surprised how much room there is inside. I can fit a whole drum set in the back. I liked it and bought it.”
The LEAF is so versatile and eco-friendly, promoting the small carbon footprint Tom appreciates. The free energy, with quick (enough) charging, works with his job.
He saves $500+ a month buying no gas, and not needing an oil change once or twice a month. His clients are also seeking the lighter footprint, which he supports with the LEAF. He transports a diverse group and has a lot of professional doctors and lawyers who carry on business while they ride. He had a recent passenger who had owned a BMW i3. The passenger explained that he enjoyed his ride in the LEAF, which he actually prefers. He sold his BMW i3 and considered a Tesla. Still, he prefers the LEAF. There is just something about it*.
No wonder, the LEAF — though a small EV in some ways — is taller than a Tesla. As well as a drum set, it is easy to fit an acupuncture table inside for in-home sessions. Indeed, a small family would fit comfortably.
*We recognize this is not a typical take on things, but it is the anecdote we received.