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Nissan LEAF named World Green Car of the Year

The All-New Nissan LEAF, the world’s best-selling electric vehicle, has been named the “2018 World Green Car” at the 2018 New York International Auto Show.

The 2018 Nissan LEAF is the first all-electric vehicle to win the World Green Car award since the category’s inception in 2016.

“We’re very proud that since Nissan LEAF launched in 2010, we’ve been able to put more than 300,000 zero-emission electric vehicles on the road worldwide, helping to reduce carbon footprints around the globe,” said Daniele Schillaci, Executive Vice President. 

“We’re honoured to be recognised by this esteemed jury and proud to continue to expand the vision of Nissan Intelligent Mobility.”

The latest LEAF rose to the top among a list of five initial category entries and was the stand-alone EV in the running. Jurors considered the vehicle’s overall environmental impact including tailpipe emissions and fuel consumption upon selecting the overall winner.

“The first LEAF was good, the new LEAF is better, so it’s an easy choice for the Green Car award,” said Australian World Car of the Year judge, Paul Gover.

“The extra range is the major advance, but Nissan has also added extra performance and more practicality.“At a time when the world is looking for honesty and realism in new technology, the LEAF gets a tick from me.”

The previous-generation Nissan LEAF was named “World Car of the Year” in 2011 and remains the only pure electric vehicle to win that award in its 14-year history. 

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LEAF batteries to light up Japanese town

Nissan and its affiliate 4R Energy Corporation have teamed up to install new streetlights that will be powered by a combination of solar panels and used batteries from the Nissan LEAF electric car in Namie, Japan.

As Nissan has been making more and more electric vehicles, the car manufacturer has also been aware that there will be many decommissioned electric car batteries in the future.

As the auto industry makes the transition to electric power, battery repurposing and recycling will be one of the obstacles to be overcome.

The project, titled “The Reborn Light,” aims to provide public lighting for Namie’s residents as part of the town’s recovery efforts following the earthquake and tsunami on March 11, 2011.

The project utilises the growing number of used electric-car batteries that will become available as electric vehicles increase in popularity around the world.

Nissan and 4R have created a new type of outdoor lighting that operates completely off the main power grid, requiring no electric cables or outlets. Since the lights are not connected to the grid, even in the case of a natural disaster which could knock out the central power supply, the Nissan lights can keep on working.

A prototype will be tested March 26 at the 4R battery reclamation factory in Namie, with full-scale installation beginning shortly. 

Nissan LEAF batteries to light up Japanese town

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New Nissan LEAF gets 5 star safety rating


The new Nissan LEAF has received a five-star safety rating, the highest possible, from the Japan New Car Assessment Program.

In earning the top grade, the zero-emission LEAF scored 94.8 points out of a possible 100 for occupant safety in a collision.

The program is organised by Japan’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism and the National Agency for Automotive Safety and Victims’ Aid.

Safety features that contributed to the New Nissan LEAF’s five-star rating include its highly rigid body structure, six SRS airbags, seats with enforced headrests and back frames, and seat belts with pre-tensioners and load-limiting capabilities for the front and rear outboard seating positions.

The New Nissan LEAF also passed the Japan New Car Assessment Program’s electric shock protection test. The test gauges how well electric vehicles protect occupants from electric shock in a collision.

The car has a highly protective battery case, a layout and body structure that shield occupants from high-voltage parts, and a high-voltage cutoff device that activates in a collision.

The all-new version comes with a number of advanced technologies including ProPILOT technology for autonomous single-lane driving on highways and the ProPILOT Park autonomous parking system. It also features e-Pedal, which lets drivers accelerate and brake by operating only the accelerator pedal.

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New Nissan Leaf to launch in NZ

Nissan will launch the model in New Zealand during the next fiscal year. The company is also introducing the zero-emission car in other markets including Australia, Hong Kong and Malaysia.

Nissan’s regional senior vice president, Yutaka Sanada said the company is working to bring the new generation of the world’s best-selling electric vehicle to as many markets as possible.

“The New Nissan LEAF is the most advanced, yet accessible 100 per cent electric vehicle on the planet,” Sanada said.

”This ingenuous car will make you feel more confident, more excited, more connected than any other mainstream electric vehicle.

“The launch in so many markets shows our commitment to playing a leading role in electrification in this dynamic region, and to delivering the future of mobility to the region now.”

Nissan has sold more than 300,000 LEAFs globally since the model first went on sale in 2010.

The company introduced a fully redesigned Nissan LEAF in September 2017, with a suite of advanced technologies that showcase Nissan ingenuity, including the e-Pedal system for one-pedal driving.

The New Nissan LEAF also features increased power and range, and improved refinement, comfort and convenience.

The car’s new electric powertrain delivers 110kW of output and 320Nm of torque, improving acceleration and driver enjoyment.

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Nissan delivers 300,000th LEAF

Nissan announced today that the company has sold its 300,000th Nissan LEAF globally since the model was first introduced to the market back in 2010.

The 100% electric LEAF is both the world’s first mass-produced and best-selling electric car. It is also New Zealand’s most popular EV.

“These numbers prove that the Nissan LEAF remains the most advanced car in the world, with the widest reach and the greatest availability,” said Nissan Executive Vice President Daniele Schillaci.

“The new Nissan LEAF is the icon of Nissan Intelligent Mobility because it delivers an even more exciting drive and enhanced ownership experience and contributes to a better world. It will take Nissan’s EV leadership even further.” 

The LEAF also topped Consumer NZ’s latest car reliability survey for 2017, with just four per cent of LEAFs in the survey having a major reliability problem that caused significant repair costs or time off the road. However, the majority of LEAF owners, 97 percent, were very satisfied with the electric car. 

Nissan launched a fully redesigned version of the LEAF in September 2017. The new Leaf offers a range of 400 km, a 33 per cent increase on the 2017 model. It will have 110 kW of power output and 320 Nm of torque a large increase in power from the current model Leaf, which has an output of 90 horse power and 254Nm of torque.

The car will go on sale October 2 in Japan. Though with only imported second hand Leaf EVs available for sale on the New Zealand market, it could be some time before we see the 2018 model on our roads.

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Update: NISMO Leaf to debut late this month

The first all-electric hot hatch is set to debut at the upcoming 45th Toyko Motor Show, and we now have a number of images and features of the new model.

Nissan says the NISMO Concept version has a sporty exterior and enhanced aerodynamic performance and less lift.

The Nissan Leaf NISMO concept.

The black interior features NISMO’s signature red accents and styling.

Sport-tuned suspension, high-performance tires and a custom-tuned computer are part of the performance upgrades.

Nissan is introducing the “Leaf e-Pedal”, which lets the driver start, accelerate, decelerate, stop and hold the car by using only the accelerator pedal.

It will also include fully automated parking technology.

The concept will feature “e-Pedal” technology, that allows the driver to accellerate, brake, and come to a complete stop, all with the accellerator pedal

Other differences from the base model leaf appear to be large alloy wheels, a lower ride height, a two-tone black and white paint finish, more aggressive looking front bumpers and side skirts, plus sporty looking red accents on the bodywork.

Nissan will also premier a new NISMO Skyline model and a NISMO Serena Minivan concept at the Motor Show.

Nissan announced plans earlier this year to refresh the NISMO brand, the company’s performance wing, in a bid to boost global NISMO sales to upwards of 15,000 per year.

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EV completes 12,000k trip across Europe

A Scottish husband and wife team have become the first entrants to complete the Mongol Rally in an electric vehicle, after travelling over 12,800 kms through 13 countries in a Nissan Leaf.

Chris and Julie Ramsey, dubbed Plug In Adventures, crossed the Mongol Rally finish line in Ulan-Ude on Saturday, after charging the Leaf 111 times and claiming to have spent about $182 in electricity costs.

Team Plug In Adventures at the finish line.

 The modified 2016 Nissan LEAF, labelled the AT-EV (All-Terrain Electric Vehicle), faced its critics, Chris said.

“There were a number of detractors who told me an electric car isn’t capable of long distance journeys,” he said.

“After thousands of miles and almost zero problems, I can tell you that is not the case.”

Throughout Europe, Chris and Julie had the use of an extensive rapid charger network that can provide an 80 per cent battery charge in just 30 minutes.

However, once they got into Bulgaria and beyond, they faced far less rapid charge options. They charged the EV at bars, cafes, hotels, hostels, a barbershop, a post office, garages, car dealerships, a tractor showroom, a police station, and three fire stations in Russia.

They even had their LEAF plugged directly into an electricity pylon in the middle of the woods in Siberia, by a local who (Nissan is keen to stress) was a trained electrician.

“In terms of vehicle reliability, the car’s been brilliant. We’ve had one puncture, one damaged alloy wheel, a mud flap came off and someone stole one of our stickers,”Chris said.

The longest stretch the couple did on a single charge with their fully loaded vehicle was 115 miles, pulling in to charge with 6 per cent capacity left.

The Plug In Adventures’ car was a standard 2016 30kWh Nissan LEAF Acenta, which offers a range of up to 250 km on a single charge, though with a number of modifications for better off-road performance.

Nissan has announced the 2018 Leaf will go on sale in Japan October 2.

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Nissan debuts 2018 Leaf

Nissan has debuted the 2018 Nissan LEAF, the next model of its flagship EV.

The specifications for the model closely align with details that leaked early last month.

The 2018 Nissan Leaf.

The new Leaf offers a range of 400 km, a 33 per cent increase on the 2017 model. It will have 110 kW of power output and 320 Nm of torque a large increase in power from the current model Leaf, which has an output of 90 horse power and 254Nm of torque.

The new leaf comes with autonomous drive technology, used during single-lane driving on highways.

The car has an autonomous parking system that takes control of steering, acceleration, braking, shift changing and the parking brake to automatically guide it into a parking spot.

The Nissan Leaf was New Zealand’s most popular EV in 2016.

The car will go on sale October 2 in Japan. Though with only imported second hand Leaf EVs available for sale on the New Zealand market, it could be some time before we see the 2018 model on our roads.

The interior of the Leaf.

Despite this, the demand for the Leaf is growing. The car climbed to gain 1 per cent of total used imported cars this August.

The Leaf is also the most popular EV worldwide with 277,000 units sold since it was released seven years ago.

The new Leaf will introduce what Nissan calls e-Pedal technology that will enable the driver to start, accelerate, decelerate and stop by increasing or decreasing the pressure applied to the accelerator. When the accelerator is fully released, regenerative and friction brakes are applied automatically, bringing the car to a stop.

The new leaf comes with a autonomous parking system.

 

 

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Best month for used imported cars since 2004

Registrations of used imported passenger vehicles were up 11.5 per cent compared to August last year, with 1490 more sales bringing this month’s total to 14,483. This makes it the third best month ever, only beaten by 14,709 units in July 2003 and 14,877 sales of fresh imports in March 2004.

Year to date used imported cars are also on a high, with sales totalling 108,865 for the eight months of 2017, up 10,555 units, an increase of 1319 per month compared to last year.

The Nissan Leaf saw a 205 per cent sales increase.

Toyota has retained the top spot with a market share for the month of 24.6 per cent with 3267 registrations.

The battle for top model is a lot closer with the Mazda Axela, Suzuki Swift and Nissan Tiida making up the top three. They hold 4.7, 4.2 and 4 per cent market share respectively.

The stand out for August however was the Nissan Leaf with sales of 177 units, an increase of 205 per cent on the 58 sales in August 2016.  The Leaf has now climbed to gain 1 per cent of total used imported cars.

In terms of the regions, Timaru went from 99 sales in August last year to 144 last month, an increase of 45.5 per cent. Invercargill and New Plymouth also did well compared to a year earlier showing increases of 33.1 and 31.9 per cent respectively.

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2018 Nissan Leaf to debut September 6

The new Nissan Leaf has an official release date.

Following a number of leaked specs, pictures and other information about the highly anticipated model, Nissan has announced that the new Leaf will debut officially on September 6 in Japan.

The Leaf is the world’s highest selling EV, with more than 280,000 units sold between December 2010 and July 2017.

Teaser image of the new Leaf released by Nissan.

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LEAF AV trialled in London

A modified Nissan LEAF AV took to the streets of London in the company’s first public self-driving vehicle test in Europe.

The AV travelled at speeds of up to 80km/h and negotiated roundabouts, multi-lane motorways and local streets with varying levels of traffic.

The autonomous system is activated inside the car with a single button. The Nissan LEAF is fitted with over 20 cameras, radars and lasers to guide the car on the road.

Nissan chose London for the test thanks to Britain’s recent flexibility in regulating AVs on the road. Britain announced changes in insurance law, which means a single policy can cover motorists driving conventionally and autonomously.

“It’s not everywhere in Europe that we can go and drive on the road,” Nissan’s director of research in the US, Maarten Sierhuis, told Reuters.

The trial took place near the ExCel exhibition centre and London City Airport east of the central business district. “You don’t want to go to the most difficult parts of London when you start. The system has to be tested,” Sierhuis said.

A previous driverless trial took place last year in Milton Keynes, but at a much lower speed.

There’s no word yet on when the LEAF AV will be available to the public.

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