When a new car manufacturer ferries road testers out to the islands of the Hebridies you can guarantee that they are trying to make a point about their car. Namely that their car will withstand the worst that mother nature can throw at it. And that their's is the sort of new car that a driver would be more than happy to be left alone with, and which offers security.
All of which does rather suggest that Nissan are secretly worried about the public perception of their new Leaf. In the highly cautions world of the car industry (and the equally conservative world of the mainstream motoring press) the fact that Nissan have chosen to throw a large proportion of their R&D budget at an electric car has led to a certain amount of unease.
The press tend to talk of potential owners as 'lentil botherers' and decry the high outlay costs and uncertain resale figures as being good enough reasons to bury this innovation at birth.
And skeptics are keenest to identify range anxiety as the concern most likely to sink the Leaf and all subsequent electric vehicles.
So key to Nissan's confidence in the Leaf is their comittment to the 100 mile range of the vehicle, a range that Nissan are confident will satisfy the demands of most of its customers.
You feel that behind the skepticism lies what may turn out to be a rather old fashioned attachment to ultimate mobility. And yet who isn't aware of the cost of their journey these days?
In this sense the Leaf's distance-to-travel guage, which has replaced the fuel guage but which works on the same principle, can be read as a broad sort of metaphor for the state of driving today.
Driving is a more anxious pursuit than it used to be and one where the driver is much more aware of the ratchetting costs of getting from A to B.
In this regard the Leaf may have more to offer particularly the urban driver than you might imagine. It is exempt from road tax and congenstion charging fees and can be 80% charged at a public charging point in less than 45 minutes.
The most spectacular fact which does bear repeating is that you can charge the Leaf via a domestic charging point for £2. That isn't bad for 100 miles of motoring, whichever way you look at it.
And the general drift of comments about the driving experience is positive. The car handles well due to its bespoke chassis and low slung battery pack and is eerily silent up to 20mph when you begin to hear the road noise you had forgotten that a car generates.
The Leaf steals a march on other new electric cars from Chevrolet (Volt), Renault (Zoe), and the Ford Focus Electric. And with Nissan planning an EV people carrier and light commercial van some time in the near future, the Japanese company with a plant in the north east of England will have high hopes that the Leaf is the beginning of something big.