Nissan aims to become world’s largest seller of electric vehicles

Article by Christian Andrei, on June 15, 2011

The delivery this month of Nissan Motor Co.’s Leaf battery cars to U.S. customers will be at a record high as the carmaker boosts production and finds ways to solve customer delays. Last Monday, Carlos Ghosn, CEO of Nissan, told reporters that it will deliver 1,500 cars in June.

Ghosn, who is also the chief of Renault, said that this will help slightly to “restart the enthusiasm." He said that customers waited longer than was expected when Nissan opened the order books in April 2010.

Leaf sales averaged just 113 a month in the first four months of U.S. deliveries but it has been increasing since April and has reached 1,142 in May.

The disaster in Japan had resulted to its output dropping as it had to repair the damage in its parts factories and as it dealt with power shortages. It’s possible that the U.S. production of Leaf and its batteries will be put off.

Nissan has invested approximately $6 billion in electric-car technology and production. Hideaki Watanabe, Nissan's vice president of zero-emission vehicles, said that the opening of its battery production line in Smyrna, Tenn. is scheduled to open in September 2012 but this may also be delayed.

The production of the Leaf was supposed to start in the Smyrna plant by December. Nissan aims to be the largest seller of electric vehicles worldwide.

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