Nissan announced today that it has started production of the 2011 Nissan LEAF electric-car at its Oppama, Japan plant. The LEAF is ready to go on sale in December in Japan and the United States and will hit select markets in Europe in early 2011. In November, the company will begin exports to the United States, followed by shipments to Europe in December.
“This is a significant milestone, not only for Nissan and the Renault-Nissan Alliance, but also for the entire automotive industry,” said Nissan President and CEO Carlos Ghosn at the Nissan LEAF offline ceremony. “Consumers are clear. They want sustainable and affordable mobility…and the Alliance is leading the way with cars that deliver exactly that, with the reliability, excitement and performance that consumers demand. The high-quality, innovative Nissan LEAF will radically transform what consumers expect from automobile manufacturers worldwide.”
The LEAF will be produced alongside the Nissan Juke and the Nissan Cube.
In the future, Nissan will produce the LEAF in Smyrna, Tennessee (in late 2012) and Sunderland, England (early 2013). When running at full-capacity, Smyrna will have an annual production capacity of 150,000 units, and Sunderland will have a capacity of 50,000 units.
Refresher: Power for the Nissan LEAF comes from a 107-hp electric-motor that runs on power supplied by lithium-ion cells. On a full-charge, the Nissan LEAF allows for a driving range of 100 miles with a top speed of 87 mph. A full charge takes up to 8 hours on a standard 200V outlet. Buyers can opt for the DC 50kW quick-charger, which recharges the battery up to 80 percent in under 30 minutes. Prices for the 2011 Nissan LEAF will start at $32,780 but with a federal tax-credit prices will come in as low as $25,280, or for a lease payment of $349 a month.
2011 Nissan LEAF:
– By: Omar Rana