Electric cars were big in the early part of the last century, largely because gasoline vehicles had to be hand-cranked to start — a difficult process that left some unwary folks with broken bones when the crank kicked back.
Then, Cadillac's self-starter made gas engines a breeze to ignite: Push the button, and there you go. And there went electrics, into obscurity.
Nothing but somber silver and boring blue -- until now. Upon our encouragement, Nissan's California outpost yanked a red Leaf electric car out of some nook and provided a photo for Drive On readers first.
It shows that in a snappy color, Leaf loses some of its ugly-on-a-stick ambiance. There's much more to Leaf than its shade.