When it comes to electric cars and those new to their benefits, range anxiety is a very real thing. I’ve felt it myself behind the wheel of the likes of the Tesla Model S, BMW i3 and the Nissan Leaf – a worry creeps in between your ears as the battery level decreases and you begin to envision yourself sitting by the side of the road out of juice, hunting frantically for the nearest charge point or waiting in a queue when Often, 200km can seem like a daunting prospect, but what about 13,000km?
That was the trek facing polar explorer Marek Kaminski, who traded trekking on foot to the Poles for a journey across two continents in the latest version of the Nissan Leaf with a custom paintjob. Kaminski began his lengthy #NoTraceExpedition in Poland back in May, something of a PR stunt for Nissan to demonstrate the feasibility of zero-emission travel by electric car – the latest version of the Leaf has a new 40 kWh battery promising driving range of 270km in real-world conditions. On route he passed through Lithuania, Belarus, Russia, Mongolia, China and South Korea, finishing in Tokyo, Japan where he clocked up another 3,000km.
“For me, this journey is not just about reaching my destination – it is also about making a simple, brilliant change to be more sustainable,” Marek explained. “Whether in the wilds of Russia, on remote Mongolian dirt tracks or in the bustling streets of Tokyo, the Leaf has been a reliable partner throughout. The car and features such as ProPILOT were impressively capable in tough driving conditions, and even in remote areas with little infrastructure, we kept the Leaf charged and on the move. The Leaf gave me the opportunity to stick to my pledge and travel without a trace, so I hope that this is a step forward on the journey towards sustainable mobility.”
No Trace Expedition: The Stats
Total number of charges: 53
Average range: 250 km
Longest distance per day: 493 km