by Eric Cohen
From the cold and snow of New Jersey to the desert heat and cactus of Arizona, Len Nowak has lived a life of extremes. He spent 43 years traveling the globe supporting worldwide pharmaceutical manufacturing and is now living the carefree life of a relaxed retiree in the Arizona high desert. Carefree and relaxed? Not Len! He’s busier than ever as a brand ambassador for Aptera, a solar-powered three-wheel electric vehicle.
Len and his wife, Susan, enjoy their rural surroundings and primitive roads. But with rural living comes EV range anxiety. As they wait for their new Aptera, Len and Susan recently purchased a Kia EV 6 GT-Line. With an estimated range of 310 miles, it’s enough to get them to their nearest big city, Tucson, and back – a 130-mile journey. This is much different from living in New Jersey where most of their driving was into New York City or their regular commute to the airport. “There aren’t a lot of electric vehicles where we live but we like being pace setters and helping others see how easy they are to drive and maintain.”
From a 1972 Nissan 240Z and Plymouth Barracuda to a Kia EV6 and Aptera, Len has come a long way in his automotive journey. “We wanted our next car to be an electric vehicle. But before deciding, we educated ourselves. I joined three electric vehicle associations to learn about charging, talked with members to get their take on vehicles, and test drove a few. One of our clubs has an Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE) adoption program, where we donate a charger, or provide a grant for one, that we give to someone to install a charger, like a restaurant or hotel. It’s a win for the establishment as it entices people to visit and it’s a win for us as it’s another installed charger that everyone can use.”
As mentioned earlier, Len is not a carefree kind of guy. But when it comes to wireless charging, “carefree” is the word that comes to mind. “Wireless charging is the next step in the EV revolution. It’s neat and clean and does away with messy wires and plugs. I really like the idea of being able to simply drive over the charger and our car starting to charge. Incredibly convenient. Why shouldn’t all EV charging be this way?”
As he enjoys his wife’s Kia, Len’s looking forward to the Aptera, which he expects to get next year. He’s one of 700 volunteer ambassadors who promote the vehicle globally. Although he likes its affordability and efficiency, he’s particularly excited about its extended range from the installed solar panels. “The only thing that will make the Aptera better is wireless charging.”