Attack Of The Neighborhood Electric Vehicles
In case you couldn’t tell, I’m hardly the biggest fan of the Insurance Institute For Highway Safety. Corporate-backed safety nannies posing as quasi-governmental bodies with an ends-justify-the-means vendetta against speed, light weight and other admirable car qualities just rub me the wrong way somehow. But the enemy of my enemy is my friend (for at least a legislative session or two), and it turns out the IIHS and I can agree on something to hate: Neighborhood Electric Vehicles. Now, you might think that limiting an entire class of cars to 25 MPH is something the IIHS would consider a good first step, but you’d be wrong. A Wall Street Journal piece on the rise of these annoying little vehicles quotes an IIHS spokesman calling NEVs “souped-up golf carts,” and warning of the safety consequences of allowing them on public roads. In fact, the IIHS is threatening to perform another round of its patented “no shit, Sherlock” crash tests, “proving” that NEVs aren’t capable of protecting passengers in a collision with a real car. Despite the pointlessness of this gesture, TTAC wholeheartedly embraces the idea of NEV crash testing, purely for entertainment and schadenfreude-related reasons. If the portion of the video above (showing what appears to be a Chrysler GEM NEV) is anything to go on, this could be epic. Meanwhile, our suggestion to eco-freak “early adopters” is to skip the NEVs and buy a motorcycle-category three wheeler. You’re still going to die in a crash, but at least we won’t get stuck behind you going 25 miles per hour. Check out TTAC’s review of the Miles ZX40 NEV here.
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