front hood of his 2016 Tesla X 90D there is nothing there besides an oversized glove box.
Welcome to the future of automobiles.
Dolfi of Tecumseh had his Tesla on display for Earth Day at Malden Park where dozens of exhibits highlighted the latest in green technology to the delight of hundreds of attendees at the annual event backed by the City of Windsor.
“I really love this car, but also love the car company for really changing the industry and making the world a better place,” he said. “Before I drove this I had a hybrid, so I have always been interested in electric cars.”
Dolfi was happy to share a look of the eye-catching car of which there are only a handful to date on the road in Windsor.
The plug-in electric car can travel 420 km when fully charged.
“I want to promote electric vehicles, show people they are not just golf carts, that they are practical and fun to drive,” he said. “It’s the best car I have ever had. It runs like a sports car, has the practicality of SUV and I never stop at a gas station.”
Among other electric vehicles on display was the Windsor-built FCA Pacifica Plug-In Hybrid which just a couple of weeks ago was made fully available for purchase at dealerships.
The Platinum Trim version which attracted plenty of attention on Sunday is available at a list price of $58,000 but comes with a $14,000 provincial rebate making the end cost considerably less, said Mark Bartlett, community environment representative for Unifor Local 444.
Nash Lemay, 5, puts his hand in the heat generated by the sun in a solar cooker at the Earth Day Celebration at Malden Park, Sunday, April 23, 2017. DAX MELMER / WINDSOR STAR
Klaus Dohring of Green Sun Rising shows off the power of the sun by using a Fresnel lens at the Earth Day Celebration at Malden Park, Sunday, April 23, 2017. DAX MELMER / DAX MELMER
“There is a lot of interest and FCA has worked really hard to refine the vehicle and make sure it’s ready for the market,” he said.
“It’s so awesome to have this locally built vehicle that is better for the environment, gets great gas mileage and very unique in the market as the first hybrid minivan.”
The hybrid Pacifica can travel 53 kilometres on battery power, before switching over to a gas motor with a full range of about 610 kilometres, Bartlett said.
“Everyone is excited and hopeful this will catch on,” he said. “We are so proud to be building this in Windsor.”
There were a couple dozen other green product displays and activity centres set up throughout Malden Park for Earth Day which has been celebrated annually in Windsor since 1989.
“The importance of Earth Day is to really draw attention to celebrating our planet, getting outside and enjoying nature,” said Avril Parent, environment and sustainability coordinator for city.
“The theme this year is ‘earth play’ so we have a lot of activities outside. This is all about connecting with the environment and improving the city we live in.”
The city continues do what it can do reduce its footprint on the environment — this year focused on updating its environmental master plan which was originally put in place in 2006, she said.
“The city is working on improving its impact on the environment,” Parent said. “We are consulting with people on what they want to see. Energy-wise we have reduced consumption through solar, energy-efficient upgrades and our waste water treatment has improved with separate sewers.”
The city continues to make transportation improvements with increased use of hybrid and clean diesel buses, while also in the initial stages of possibly investing in hybrid fleet vehicles, she said.
Gracelyn Guthrie, 2, left, and Aubree Weeks, 1, have fun at the Earth Day Celebration at Malden Park, Sunday, April 23, 2017. DAX MELMER / WINDSOR STAR
Kathryn Corby and her son, Paul Lefaive, 4, participate in a scavenger hunt at the Earth Day Celebration at Malden Park, Sunday, April 23, 2017. DAX MELMER / WINDSOR STAR
Marco Dolfi is pictured with his Tesla X 90D that was on display at the Earth Day Celebration at Malden Park, Sunday, April 23, 2017. DAX MELMER / DAX MELMER
Families enjoy the warm weather at the Earth Day Celebration at Malden Park, Sunday, April 23, 2017. DAX MELMER / WINDSOR STAR
Bill McRae, 87, participates in the 2017 Little River Earth Day Riverbed Clean-up Project, Saturday, April 22, 2017.DAX MELMER / WINDSOR STAR