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2011-10-06 11:12

TURNING A NEW LEAF: Renault, Nissan president Carlos Ghosn showcases the new electric LEAF at JIMS.

Nissan has announced that its electric LEAF will be coming to South Africa in 2013.

Speaking at the Johannesburg International Motor Show, Mike Whitfield, Nissan South Africa, confirmed plans to bring the current World and European Car of the Year to the SA market.

Since its launch in late 2010, the Nissan LEAF has been introduced to countries implementing the necessary charging infrastructure and government incentives to support the wide-spread take up of electric vehicles.

To date, the battery hatchback has been launched in Japan, USA and a growing number of European markets, resulting in more than 12000 units sold.

The LEAF’s lithium-ion battery has a range of up to 160 km on a single charge…despite what Top Gear would have us believe and delivers a top speed of up to 145 km/h.

Nissan LEAF

ELECTRIC CAR: Electric cars may such as the LEAF may be great for the environment but without the necessary infrastructure in place they will never take off.

Nissan has been in talks with government and Whitfield stated that depending on the vehicle market the automaker plans launch the new model in 2013.

Whitfield:  “I am delighted to announce that we are intending to bring the Nissan LEAF to South Africa in 2013, subject to confirmation of government policy on charging infrastructure and customer incentives.

“Although there is more work to do before we can confirm its launch in South Africa, doing so would underline both Nissan’s, and this country’s, commitment to delivering a more sustainable future for road transport,” he said.

Aiming to be the world leader in zero-emission vehicles, Nissan and partner Renault, has formed partnerships with globally to develop and produce EV and lithium-ion batteries.

“This very special car is the world’s first mass-market EV, and has already brought affordable, practical and enjoyable zero-emission mobility to thousands of people,” said Whitfield.

Read more reports about the 2011 Johannesburg International Motor Show.

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