Nissan Motors, on Wednesday, delivered the first 10 units of its 100 per cent electric and zero-emission Nissan LEAF in Japan.
The all electric car, Leaf, which has taken the world by storm, has delivered 10units to the Kanagawa Prefectural Government. Of which, six will be used for official purpose and the remaining will serve as rental cars to be used in the prefecture's EV Sharing Model Business, the car-maker said in a statement.
Nissan Motor is expected to sell 500,000 electric vehicles annually by the end of 2013, Renault Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn had told reporters on eve of the market debut of the Nissan Leaf.
We're going to have to put some efforts into selling the car, but the kind of spontaneous demand is going to be driving the sales for the next three years, Ghosn said. There is such a curiosity about the car and attention to the car.
The car has already sold out for this fiscal year in Japan at 6,000 orders and in the U.S. at 20,000, reaching production limits.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has given the 2011 Nissan Leaf a mileage rating of 99 miles per gallon (mpg); besides dubbing the electric car to be the best for fuel efficiency and the environment.
We are pleased to deliver the first Nissan LEAF in Japan to Kanagawa Prefecture, which serves as a model local government supporting EV promotion in Japan. With our global headquarters, R&D and production bases within the prefecture, we strive to be an active member of the community and contribute as much as we can to Kanagawa. Toshiyuki Shiga, chief operating officer of Nissan said.
Nissan Leaf will be priced at 3.76 million yen (US$ 45,000), but the actual price customers would have to pay will start at 2.98 million yen as the environmentally friendly car will be eligible for subsidies. These subsidies are applicable only until the end of Japan's fiscal year, which falls on March 31. The government is yet to announce its incentive policy beyond that date.
So far Nissan has installed charging equipment at all its 2,200 domestic dealers in Japan, so as to enable the drivers to charge the car when the battery runs low.
Earlier in November, Nissan tied up with Mitsubishi Motor Co to allow drivers of their electric vehicles to share battery chargers at their 2,900 dealerships nationwide in a bid to increase the popularity and convenience of the eco-friendly cars.
According to a recent report from Bloomberg New Energy Finance, plug-in electric vehicles, including plug-in hybrids and battery electric vehicles, have the potential to make up 9 per cent of auto sales in 2020 and 22 per cent in 2030 (1.6 million and 4 million vehicle sales respectively).