Nissan to install over 100 quick chargers in Leaf dealers

Article by Anita Panait, on July 11, 2013

Nissan Motor Co. will install over 100 public DC quick chargers at dealers certified to sell its Nissan Leaf in 21 markets in the United States. The charging units will use the CHAdeMO standard to charge a Leaf from zero to around 80 percent in just 30 minutes. Some of the main reasons why consumers in the US have been reluctant to shift to electric vehicles as well as plug-in hybrids are their concerns with the unit's driving range, inadequate charging infrastructure and high prices of such products.

Nissan posted a 213-percent rise in sales of the Leaf EV in the first half of 2013 to 9,839 units, but the figures were still below the carmaker's expectations. Nissan also trimmed the price of the Leaf earlier this year to attract more buyers for the Leaf.

Brendan Jones, director of electric vehicle infrastructure strategy for Nissan, said in a statement, remarked that the Japanese carmaker is undertaking a "proactive, multi-pronged approach" to expand charging infrastructure to increase awareness of the Leaf, and "instill range confidence in potential customers."

He remarked that available charging infrastructure "opens the doors" for more Nissan Leaf sales. Nissan's move followed a 24-dealer pilot program that it implemented at dealerships in San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego, Sacramento and Seattle. According to Nissan, the pilot was rolled out to assess how frequent the chargers were used and the impact of on-site charging on a dealership's operations.

Richard Luengo, general manager at Nissan of Downtown Los Angeles, said in a statement that since their dealership is located at the intersection of two of the busiest freeways in the US, having a quick charger available for the drivers is "a boon for business."  He said that their store is averaging around 10 charging sessions daily at its quick charger. He said the installation of a quick charger at their store resulted to noticeable improvement in sales.

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