2011 Nissan Leaf: Score one for the Leaf
July 28, 2011
Nissan Leaf - 1
Toyota Prius - 0
For several years the yellow clean air stickers allowed California drivers access to the HOV-carpool lane regardless of headcount. Under this program the first 85,000 applicants with qualifying hybrid vehicles received the yellow hall pass. The Prius ruled the roadways until the stickers expired at the beginning of this month. When the plague of hypermiling Prius drivers merged into the general population, the HOV lane was free.
Single-occupant vehicles now need these white clean air stickers for the carpool lane privilege. Qualifying vehicles include hydrogen, natural gas and fuel-cell electric powered vehicles. The program lasts into 2015. We patiently waited for our stickers to arrive for the Leaf. Now that they're here we plan to utilize the coveted, vacated carpool lane as much as possible.
I've added over 250 HOV-lane miles on our Leaf in the past 3 days already. Doing so shaved roughly 30 minutes a day from my commute. I can get used to this.
Mike Schmidt, Vehicle Testing Manager @ 3,042 miles