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We chat to Karen & Shane about how to own an EV on a budget!

Yes, we know EVs are a little out of the price bracket… but only for now.

There are a few options if you’re desperate to get into one and just can’t wait for the electric vehicle price parity.

This adventurous couple from Canberra, Karen and Shane, are following one path - by importing their own second hand, low kilometre Nissan Leaf from Japan. Let's see what they have to say!

What made you decide to buy an EV?

"Funny you say that, this time last year we had no idea about Electric Cars. However, our decision to get one sparked after the federal election, when Bill Shorten released his EV policy and got a lot of flak. Oh and when ScoMo got on his "soapbox" and said say goodbye to the weekend. So we decided to give an EV a go."

How did you decide on what EV to buy?

"Well, we couldn’t hire one in Australia, and being based in Canberra, there is also nowhere to hire. We thought about Sydney but it was $300 a day! On our recent visit to NZ we also checked out the scene over there, talked to owners, looked at charging, and in the end came back and hired one through Juicy Car Rentals. It was a shame we had to do it in NZ, Australia is really behind NZ when it comes to EVs...

In the end we test drove both a NV200 and a Leaf but didn’t have $50k plus to spare. So we decided to save up some money and thought, what if we could get a 62kW Leaf for a lot less than a 40kW one in Australia? The 320km range is such a decent range we thought it goes head to head with any other EV. It would also enable us to go from Canberra to Wagga or Sydney and take those longer trips. At $47k it’s a lot, but less than the 40kW."

What sparked the YouTube channel?

"We were filming our journey for family and friends anyway, so decided to start a channel. We wanted the channel to give guidelines on how to import EVs and show people the process. It also gave those, like us, who don’t have the money, the option that you can still scrape together some money and get one a lot cheaper.

It’s the expense that’s the killer with EVs, like Teslas, and not everyone’s got $70+. There’s no real new entry level EVs in Australia and very few on the second hand Leafs going around. So we’re stepping through the journey to show people how they can import an EV on a budget and around your day job!

"At the end of the day, we’re not on high wages and are just average Aussies. We’ll show all the mistakes we make along the way. We want to set up a template for people to think if they can do it, we can do it as well. This’ll be one of the 62kWh in the country under $50k."

Love the idea? You can join Shane and Karen's journey at their YouTube channel or follow them on Twitter!


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