Friday, December 17, 2010
2011 Nissan Leaf: the Pros and Cons of living with electric cars
2011 Nissan Leaf
The car he drives now, a Toyota Motor Corp. gas-electric Prius, is the current front-runner in eco-friendly vehicles.
On Monday, Nissan Motor Co. will release its all-electric Leaf in Japan.
The release of the Leaf, which Nissan calls the world's first mass-produced, regular-sized electric car, is likely to rekindle the market for electric vehicles as other automakers are racing to roll out their own models.
Electric vehicles failed then because they were not seen as commercially viable--"No carmakers can afford to dismiss electric vehicles."
Before "electric vehicles" started to be taken seriously as commercially viable, hybrid vehicles with gasoline engines and electric motors dominated the market for eco-friendly vehicles--Nissan, he said, will do it with electric vehicles.
The lithium-ion battery that powers an electric vehicle substantially pushes up the price. The Leaf's range is about 200 kilometers between charges. "I don't expect any inconvenience with an electric vehicle," he said.--Nissan's Ghosn predicts that electric vehicles will account for 10 percent of vehicles sold in the global market in 2020.
"Unless the performance of batteries is dramatically improved, it will be difficult for electric vehicles to compete on driving range on par with gas-powered vehicles (approximately 600 kilometers)," said a senior Honda official.
Honda and Toyota are set to release their electric vehicles in the Japanese and U.S. markets in 2012.
The prevailing view in the auto industry is that consumers will want electric vehicles for short distances and hybrids for long distances.
Test driving an electric car at an automaker's media event is one thing. The problem is that if you run the battery down, it takes 20 hours to fully recharge the Leaf from a 110-volt outlet. A 220-volt outlet instantly solves the problem. Talk about a charging deficit!
Of course, the range goes up if you turn the heater off.
Nissan North America Inc. (NNA) brings sustainable mobility to Seattle with arrival of the state's first all-electric Nissan LEAF, following deliveries earlier in the week in Northern and Southern California, Arizona and Oregon. Area couple Jennifer Steele and Jonathan Hoekstra took delivery of their red "Nissan LEAF SL "today at Stadium Nissan. Seattle and King County comprise a primary launch market for the Nissan LEAF, as well as a participant in The EV Project, a research and charging infrastructure deployment project. The Seattle delivery is part of more than a week of festivities, as Nissan delivers the first Nissan LEAF vehicles to each of its primary launch markets in Northern and Southern California, Arizona, Oregon, Seattle and Tennessee. The initial Nissan LEAF deliveries will be followed by a second shipment of Nissan LEAF electric cars scheduled to arrive on Dec. 20, and destined for consumer driveways in time for the holidays. More information on Nissan in North America, the Nissan LEAF and zero emissions can be found at