EV Driver Profile: Al Pugsley

Al Pugsley became an electric vehicle (EV) advocate after seeing the 2006 movie “Who Killed the Electric Car?”

Electric VehiclesIn 2006, Al Pugsley saw the movie “Who Killed the Electric Car?” “It made me so angry, it changed my life,” he said.

Pugsley was curious when he went to the movie. He was an electric vehicle (EV) advocate when he left. The man is passionate about them.

Early adopter
His first EV was a converted Chevy S10 truck with a 30-mile range. Next, he converted a Kia Sorento and drove it until he bought a Nissan Leaf in 2012. Today he drives a 2013 Tesla Model S, and he expects to receive his new Tesla Model X, the first EV SUV, later this year. His wife drives a Nissan Leaf.

“Last year my wife and I spent $7 on gas, and that was for our lawn mower,” he said.

KCP&L Clean Charge Network
“Range used to be a problem,” he explained. “But now there are more than 1,000 KCP&L chargers in place around the region, in addition to other available charging stations. The KCP&L Network host site pays for the electricity the first two years, and then the card you use to operate it will become a credit card, adding what you use to your monthly KCP&L electric bill. It will cost a lot less than what you’re paying for gas.” And there’s a free phone app and portal to help you to find the stations nearest to your location.

“These charging stations are good for commerce because we EV drivers like to shop and dine where chargers are available. Many local businesses have added them, and demand is growing. For example, people in apartment complexes will need charging networks if they want to drive an EV. So adding them will give that complex a competitive advantage. That’s the beauty of the KCP&L Clean Charge Network. Major infrastructure is in place, and it’s expanding.”

Meanwhile, back in Tesla-ville . . .
Pugsley likes everything about his car. Zero emissions. Low maintenance. No tune ups or spark plugs. It was Consumer Reports’ 2015 Car of the Year. “They have to revise their scoring method because it only goes to 100 and the 2015 Tesla scored 103.” He added that Teslas are “fun to drive and own,” with a range of up to 265 miles. “They deliver your new car to your house and you get an automatic loaner if your car needs servicing.  So you’re never without a car.” 

Any disappointments?
The lack of backseat cup holders was the only thing he could think of that he would change about the car. “And they’re pricey, but Tesla’s getting ready to offer a lower-priced model,” he said. “The average American drives 29 to 40 miles per day, so an EV more than meets their needs. And for that occasional long trip? “Rent a car,” he said. “Why pay year round for what you need only a couple of weeks a year.”

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