Chicago Auto Show visitors can now test drive an all-electric vehicle for first time

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As technology gets more advanced, so do the vehicles at the Chicago Auto Show. (WLS)

As technology gets more advanced, so do the vehicles at the Chicago Auto Show, and an all-electric car is now available for a test drive for the first time.

The indoor test tracks at the Chicago Auto Show are one of the most popular attractions outside of the cars themselves! At Jeep, people have waited two hours for this thrill track. But show visitors want more to drive, and manufacturers are accommodating.

"They know that when people come to the Chicago Auto Show. It's a consumer show and they realize over 60 percent of them will buy a car within a year," said Chicago Auto Show 2018 Chairman John Hennessy.

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Looking for a new car? Potential car buyers make stop at Chicago Auto Show.

As a result, six manufactures are offering test drives in seven vehicles, up nearly double from last year. This year for the first time, visitors at the Auto Show can test drive an all-electric vehicle.

"Most people in the Midwest have never driven an electric car," said Joe Koenig of Chicago Area Clean Cities. "Getting people beyond that thought of, 'Oh I don't understand it, it's not for me, it doesn't work, it's a car that putt-putts along,' but these things perform!"

The Chrysler Pacifica, Mitsubishi Outlander and Nissan Leaf are available to drive. The newly redesigned 2018 Leaf has 40 percent range increase, propilot assist and e-pedal.

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Chicago Auto Show Chairman John Hennessy joined ABC7 Monday morning.

"It's semi-autonomous meaning the car will stop itself, start itself, it's based on sensors in the front and the environment," said Nissan USA electric vehicle manager Eric Heineman.

Takes getting used to but it's a great safety feature. Anyone who thinks electric cars are sluggish, think again! The Leaf has punch! Zero to 60 in 6.2 seconds!

Of course with no engine, there are no emissions, no tailpipe! It's EPA rated range is 155, more when it's warmer. The car we drove sells for about $30,000 and very little maintenance, no engine no oil changes, just air in the tires and windshield wiper fluid.
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The Jeep test track is one of the most popular features at the Chicago Auto Show.

Click Here for ABC7's 2018 Chicago Auto Show Guide.

For more information, visit:

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The Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid is one of a number of electric vehicles a this year's Chiacgo Auto Show.

Related Topics:
automotivechicago auto showauto showautoshowChicagoNear South Side
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