My experiences testing MINI's new all-electric vehicle around Long Island
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  • It Was Bound To Happen Sometime

    Posted on August 26th, 2009 Stu 3 comments

    I’ve heard about it so it wasn’t a total surprise but it still made me panic. I was stopped at a red light on a slight hill and when I went to go… Oops! All I could do was roll backward. NOPETROL shifted into neutral all by her lonesome. With a truck close on my tail I started working fast.

    First, I hit the Off button. Then I tried to turn the car back on and realized I was still in Drive so I had to start all over again. The line behind me started getting impatient so I put on the four-ways. Then I shifted to Park, restarted and shifted to Drive. As the pissed off truck driver tried to maneuver around me, I finally got out of his way and made my left turn.

    I hope the computer recorded the event and that this problem, which happened many times to other Pioneers, will be fixed with a software update at check-up time.

  • NOPETROL’s First Playdate

    Posted on August 25th, 2009 Stu 1 comment

    Don Young from Shelter Island and his MINI E, Got Plug?, came by on Saturday, August 22 on his way to New Jersey. There was a MINI E gathering in Montclair, New Jersey that afternoon and it was within reach of my house but not his. He only needed a booster shot so I hooked up Got Plug? and we went to breakfast. We also stopped at Southaven Park so I could show Don my trains. After about an hour and a half’s charge and, of course, a photo shoot, they were on their way to New Jersey.

    I had other things I had to do that day so I join Don with NOPETROL. Perhaps I can make it next time. I’d also like to arrange a picnic for MINI E Pioneers on Long Island sometime soon. If anyone’s interested, drop me a line.

    Don returned around 8PM and Got Plug? got another electron boost while we chatted over dinner. Got Plug? didn’t need a full charge to get home so, when we returned from dinner, Don and Got Plug? were on their way.

    Thanks, Don, for the wine and the tee shirt. It was a nice visit. I hope to get to Shelter Island for a visit soon, too.

  • Tee Shirts. Get Your Tee Shirts…

    Posted on July 21st, 2009 Stu 2 comments
    TwistyBlitz MINI E Tee Shirts

    TwistyBlitz MINI E Tee Shirts

    Now  that I have a MINI E hat thanks to the folks at MINI, I’m looking forward to getting a custom tee shirt from Robert Ballard at TwistyBlitz. I already have a couple of 3″ badges from him on the back of MINI E 277. One is a plug icon and the other is a gas pump with a cirlce and slash. My car is now getting the attention it deserves!

    I know a lot of MINI E Pioneers have already ordered tee shirts. If you haven’t, please check out Robert’s site. There are quite a few designs and options available as well as specific men’s and women’s sizes. Also note the car number on the sleeve of the long sleeve shirts and the back of the short sleeve shirts.

    Thanks, Robert, for going through the trouble to cater to the Pioneers and sending along the picture of the shirts so I could show them off. I should also add that if you’re among the first 25 to order, Robert will throw in a free badge with your order.

  • Back from Vacation – Lots to Update

    Posted on July 11th, 2009 Stu 4 comments

    I spent the Fourth of July weekend just outside of Montreal, Canada. No, I didn’t flatbed the MINI E. I visited the Montreal Live Steamers and ran my 1/8 scale train between raindrops. Of course, the weather on Long Island was beautiful and I was camping out in a tent in the rain. Oh well. 

    For those planning to drive in Canada, here’s a few things to note. They have blinking green traffic lights. They serve the same function as left turn arrows here. Some horizontal traffic lights have red signal heads on both ends to make them stand out. Also, some of the LED traffic lights have square red, diamond yellow and round green heads. As a colorblind person I can appreciate this although my problem is usually with telling red from yellow on single blinking signals. 

    Now on to the MINI E news. First of all I received my NOPETROL vanity plates. Read the rest of this entry »

  • Who Was That Masked Man?

    Posted on June 26th, 2009 Stu 1 comment

    As I was driving home yesterday, I suddenly heard a car beeping its horn coming up on my left side. I looked over and saw that it was a MINI. Wow! Someone finally recognized my MINI E. Then I realized that it wasn’t just any MINI. It was MINI E 337!

    I needed to get home so I didn’t follow him and since my turn was coming up I didn’t get a chance to read the magnetic sign on his door. I, therefore, have no idea who this is. I don’t see 337 listed on any blog or Facebook. Hopefully, I’ll spot it again or the owner will read this blog and contact me.