2011 has been touted as “the year of the plug-in electric vehicle”.  With domestic fuel prices up 30 percent since last year, drivers are feeling pain at the pumps.   Automakers have heard the cries of American wallets and have delivered a fleet of plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs).  The Nissan Leaf and Chevy Volt are the first in a new generation of PEVs.  The Leaf, a full PEV, runs entirely on a battery powered by the electric grid.   The Volt is a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) that runs on a grid powered battery but also has a conventional engine fueled by gasoline.   The Volt can travel between 20-50 miles on a single charge while the Leaf can travel over 100 miles.  Regardless of a driver’s selection, the charging costs of both vehicles are less per mile than gasoline or diesel  – approximately three cents per mile for EVs versus 12 cents per mile for conventional engines.

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