Jessi Cruickshank on how electric cars can make us all ‘cool’…even the geeks

Written by Jessi Cruickshank, TV Personality & WWF supporter
I have never worn ‘cool’ running shoes. I am the girl at the gym with the geriatric New Balances, a size too big so that they to fit my orthotics. Similarly, I have never driven a ‘cool’ car. I have only ever driven the New Balance of vehicles. The practical car in the practical colour that has high gas mileage and a low carbon footprint. I’m that girl. Excuse me, I was that girl. Not anymore.
It all began last year when I started working with WWF-Canada- I was an environmental activist as a kid and I was thrilled to help educate Canadians on the merits of driving an electric vehicle. Since then, EV sales have grown by over 80% and the amount of Canadians who have driven an EV has doubled. This year, I met up with WWF-Canada President and CEO David Miller to go on a ‘First Date’ in a BMW i3 electric car. I fell in love. With his car.

Jessi Cruickshank
© Jessi Cruickshank/WWF-Canada

Not only is the vehicle made with sustainable materials, from the eucalyptus wood interior to the recycled plastic-fiber cloth seats, it is entirely emission-free and it drives like a sports car. Rolling in his sick electric ride, David and I checked out some of Toronto’s environmental hot-spots; from the St. Lawrence Market to the Leslie Street Spit. Our “date” showed me that there is a strong sustainable future for Canadian cities and it inspired me to re-connect with nature.  It also inspired me to get a new car.

The day I got back to Los Angeles, I paid a trip to the BMW dealership and invested in not just a new vehicle, but a new lifestyle. I charge my car in my home outlet and I never buy gas. Everywhere I go in my i3 I get stopped, I honked at, heads turn, people wave… I have NEVER BEEN MORE POPULAR IN MY ENTIRE LIFE. Suddenly I’m the girl in the ‘cool’ car, all while acting as a rolling billboard for saving energy. For the record, I still hit the pedal wearing orthopedic shoes.