Nissan LEAF

Nissan LEAF

Autocar recently picked up on Nissan's idea to attempt the Three Peaks Challenge using its electric car to get around.

The Three Peaks Challenge requires one to visit the highest peaks in Scotland, England and Wales – up for the climb was Autocar's Ben Nevis in the Grampian Mountains, Scafell Pike in the Lake District and Snowdon in north-western Wales, the task must be completed within 24 or at least under 36 hours.

A 470 mile journey (more than 750 km), combined with climbing to the top of each peak, is pretty exhaustive.

As such, legs between the peaks need to include visits at CHAdeMO DC fast chargers, despite regenerative braking partially compensating driving to the top.

The interesting adventure shows us that it's still difficult to achieve something like the Three Peaks Challenge in an electric vehicle with limited capacity like the 30 kWh Nissan LEAF, even with good planning and diesel back-up car.

The Autocar/Nissan team eventually ran out of time during its journey, due various reasons - from not necessarily the best start time, harder than expected hill climbing, experiencing the darkest night of the month, encountered a distressed climber who needed hours of help, traffic of 45mph on a single lane, downtime caused by deers everywhere (the big ones), rare quick charging station availability, and more.

"To meet immovable appointments in London the next day, there was simply no time to soldier on to Snowdonia. Arrogantly, perhaps, we’d given ourselves no time to make mistakes. We’d started at the wrong time of day, driven the Highlands too slowly and consequently run out of that most precious of all commodities: hours. Even if we jumped in the Navara now, at 2pm, we would still hardly be back in the Smoke by midnight. That decided it: we parked the Leaf at Snowdon – for collection later – and set off south in our doughty double-cab Nissan pick-up.

I was sorry to leave the Leaf. It had been faithful, and great to drive, and entirely true to its parameters. It was I, its custodian, who had messed up. It had every right to be displeased with me, but as I parked it where it could be easily collected, it felt as docile and obedient as ever." full history at Autocar.

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