Oregon has always been a state that values its independence (without having to threaten secession). In fact, the state motto is "alis volat propriis," which (ignoring the no-feminine-pronoun-in-Latin issue) means "she flies with her own wings." That independent spirit lends itself to open-mindedness – which might be a big reason Oregon is quickly becoming a favored proving ground for electric vehicles and electric vehicle (EV) infrastructure – and is just one of many reasons we want to live there.

George Beard, a Portland State University instructor, has helped create a pilot project to help Toyota test their RAV4 plug-ins. As part of the program, Beard is lending RAV4 plug-ins to PSU faculty and staff to see how they handle the "dreaded range anxiety of only being able to 100 miles." Beard says Toyota will soon let him lend 10 plug-in Prius demos as well.

Toyota isn't the only company getting their electrified fingers into the Beaver State. "Oregon continues to be a leader when it comes to the introduction of plug-ins", said Brian Carolin, Nissan sales and marketing senior vice president, during a recent Portland visit. Arizona company eTec will use federal grant money to install 220-volt charging equipment in the homes of the first 900 Nissan Leaf buyers in Oregon – FOR FREE. The equipment is worth almost $2,000 per unit and will allow Leaf owners to recharge in about 6-8 hours.

Even gas stations are said to be ramping up for an Oregon EV revolution. Powerful next-gen charging stations, capable of replenishing batteries in 15 or 20 minutes, will be located right along side gasoline pumps. One huge incentive to the EV charging stations is that Oregon's silly ban on self-service gas fueling won't apply to them.

[Source: Oregonlive | Image: C.C. 2.0 – StuSeeger]

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