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Skies clear and 100 come out to learn about and test drive EVs

Big Freddy wants to win this Ford C-Max Energi, one of the automaker's plug-in electrics.

On Saturday, close to 100 people from nearby and as far away as Bethlehem, Bristol, Philadelphia and Cinnaminson, N.J., came to the Fred Beans 2nd Annual E-Cars Expo in Doylestown to compare electric cars from four different automakers and to hear experts speak about the advantages to driving a plug-in vehicle.

A tax accountant, home and commercial charging station manufacturer’s representative, Ford EV product specialist and the co-founder of an EV advocacy group took turns speaking to the all-ages group and answering questions. Exhibiting and chatting with guests were a variety of other specialists connected to the electric vehicle industry.

“There’s no compromise with an electric car,” said John Possumato, regional product expert for Ford’s line-up of EVs. “They are practical and fun to drive, and display screens teach you how to drive optimally.

“An electric motor delivers instant torque – no warm-up needed. We know that the first three to ten minutes [with a gas-powered engine] creates the most pollution, which EVs eliminate while giving us that instantaneous power.”

Test drives were offered in Chevy Volt, Ford C-Max Energi, Ford Focus electric, Ford Fusion Energi, Nissan Leaf and Toyota Prius plug-in. Also on display was the Tesla Roadster.

The e-cars expo is designed to provide an opportunity for automotive enthusiasts and consumers to compare the features of different affordable electric-powered vehicles and to share information about the present and future of the “green car” industry.


Paul Heitman of ChargedUpCar.com and Dana Snell of AeroVironment

“We had a nice cross-section of people who came specifically for the opportunity to test drive and compare the features and prices of EVs from four different manufacturers,” said John Kachmar, Leaf product specialist from Fred Beans Nissan on West Swamp Road.

Donna Mullin, JD, CPA

Donna Mullin, JD, CPA, of Boyer & Ritter Certified Public Accountants, Camp Hill, Pa., talked about the tax advantages of owning an electric vehicle. Ford’s John Possumato explained that EVs’ powerful acceleration offers greater torque than most gas-powered vehicles – without the pollution. Dana Snell, sales rep for AeroVironment, presented and answered questions about charging stations.

Michael Craner of Renew America Roadtrip(TM)

One of the expo’s presenters was inventor, investor and electric vehicle and renewable energy advocate Michael Craner, BSEE, who brought his Tesla Roadster. Craner and his wife, Maddy, co-founded Renew America Roadtrip™.

Exhibits were manned by subject-matter experts in charging station technology, vehicle technology, renewable electric power and other industries connected to electric vehicles.

Along with hot dogs from the grill prepared by Beans Chevrolet cashier and sales assistant Erica Kornfeind, the Expo offered up a “green” alternative to the usual expo food in the form of fare from local farms.

The refreshments included artisanal cheeses from Ely’s farm in Newtown; apples from Manoffs’ Market Garden and Solebury Orchards, both in Solebury; cider from Snipes Farm & Education Center in Morrisville; and cider donuts from Tabora Farms in Chalfont.

Christopher Levesque of Doylestown, an automotive instructor at ATC in Warminster, left, and his son Ryan, 8, register for a drawing for a free Ford C-Max Energi with the help of Ford EV team specialist Ian Lake.

Paul Heitman, an exhibitor from Charged Up Car, answers questions from Mike Brand of Philadelphia , who wants to know more about home charging stations. Mike made the trip from Philly with his little daughter just to take advantage of the EV comparison opportunities the event offered.

Ford EV product specialist John Possumato spoke of special features on and benefits of electric cars.

Key organizer of the Fred Beans E-Cars Expo for two years is John Kachmar, Leaf Specialist at Fred Beans Nissan in Doylestown.

At the grill: Chevrolet's Erica Kornfeind and Bruce Hembrick

Michael Craner's Tesla roadster has been across the country more than once for charity and to raise awareness of alternatively powered transportation. Paul Heitman and Karen Crane get to take it for a ride around the block.

Dan Williams and Dea Rogers of Souderton take time out to chat with Mark Donahue, Fred Beans Chevrolet general manager.

A family listens to the presentations.