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Nissan LEAF: safari vehicle?

Sections: Chassis, Fuel Economy

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Nissan LEAF safari vehicle

A Nissan LEAF safari vehicle outfitted by Nissan of Liverpool, England for nearby Knowsley Safari. (Photo courtesy Nissan)

Suppose we’re playing a word association game. When I say the two words, “Nissan LEAF,” what are the first two words that come to your mind? How about, “safari vehicle?”

…No?

A press release from Nissan said the Knowsley Safari Learning and Discovery Team based near Liverpool, England has chosen the Nissan LEAF as a zero-emission way to transport critters across that part of the country to primary schools, where the team frequently gives talks about animals ranging from snakes to spiders and other “creepy-crawlies,” as the press release called them.

According to Nissan, the two educators in the Knowsley Safari Learning and Discovery Team travel about 10,000 miles a year and chose the Nissan LEAF and chose the 100% electric car as a way to further their park’s sustainability objectives. Reportedly, this particular Nissan LEAF is charged by solar panels at Knowsley Safari, making it completely free to charge. In addition to choosing a Nissan LEAF, the park already operates a rainwater capture system and operates a “zero-to-landfill” facility designed to minimize waste. Sounds like a zero-emission safari vehicle would fit in fine.

Knowsley Safari Head of Visitor Services Richard Smith said, “In many ways the LEAF is the perfect car for us. It’s fantastic. Because we’ve been able to couple our charger to our solar panels, there are effectively no running costs, and that’s a real advantage. We also operate in accordance with a strict sustainability plan, and in that regard the LEAF is a winner, too. It fits very neatly with the overall message the Learning and Discovery Team are delivering at schools across the region.”

The press release said the Knowsley Safari Nissan LEAF safari vehicle was sponsored by local dealer Nissan Liverpool and is painted in a custom livery.

Nissan Liverpool General Sales Manager Mike Thomas said, “We’re delighted to be able to support such a prestigious and fantastic attraction, and I’m delighted they’re reaping the benefits of the Nissan LEAF. So many other businesses and individuals could be enjoying the environmental and economic benefits of the model as well, and I’d encourage them to take a test drive and see how easily it could meet their needs. Even when it’s charged from a domestic socket rather than from solar panels, the LEAF costs just two pence per mile to run, and it’s hard to argue with that.”

It sounds like a great fit for Knowsley Safari, to be honest. However, when I read the words “Nissan LEAF safari vehicle,” I have to admit I had visions of a Rancho-shocked, high ground clearance Nissan LEAF with off-road knobbies. Because my redneck brain says that would be awesome.

Don’t judge me.

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