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1 in 3 consumers are open to EVs

One in three Southeast Asian consumers planning to buy a car are open to purchasing an electric vehicle, a Nissan-commissioned study showed. 

The finding demonstrates the region’s strong potential to speed up the electrification of mobility.

 The study by Frost & Sullivan, titled “Future of Electric Vehicles in Southeast Asia,” was released today in Singapore at Nissan Futures, a gathering of industry leaders, government officials and media.

Consumer research in Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam and the Philippines reveals that 37 per cent of prospective buyers are open to considering an electric vehicle as their next car. 

With the right incentives, the region can accelerate the adoption of electric and electrified vehicles, the study shows.

While potential demand for electric vehicles is significant, adoption barriers remain, including a lack of knowledge. 

“Leapfrogging in electrification of mobility requires strong collaboration between public and private parties and a long-term approach tailored to each market’s unique situation,” Yutaka Sanada, regional senior vice president at Nissan, said at Nissan Futures.

“Consumers in Southeast Asia have indicated that governments have a critical role to play in the promotion of electric vehicles.”

“Meanwhile, as car manufacturers, we need to do a better job in explaining that EVs are indeed a safe, smart and sustainable option in all weather conditions,” Sanada added.

“Nissan’s electric vehicles undergo extremely rigorous testing in the most severe conditions. We are very proud that our 300,000 Nissan LEAF customers have driven more than 3.9 billion kilometers around the world since 2010, without experiencing any critical incidents with the batteries.”

Vivek Vaidya, senior vice president of mobility at Frost & Sullivan, added: “Contrary to popular belief that the high cost of EVs is the impediment, the survey reveals that safety concerns and charging concerns run high on customers’ minds. If the industry and government can take away these barriers, the full potential of EVs can be reached.”

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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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Six EVs headed to Nissan and Infiniti

A glimpse into the future of Nissan’s all electric fleet – The IMx concept

It has just been announced that Nissan and its luxury division, Infiniti, are scheduled to receive six new all electric vehicles (EVs) within the next five years. 

Speaking with Automotive News, Toshihiro Hirai, Nissan corporate vice president for powertrain and EV engineering revealed that four will go to Nissan and two will be under Infiniti.

The six EVs will be part of the 12 that the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance is planning to release up to 2022, as originally detailed last September on a business plan by Carlos Ghosn, the alliance’s CEO.

All six vehicles will be fully electric and none will feature hybrid technology like Nissan’s own e-Power system, which was proven popular in its home market of Japan.

Although this plan only covers the next five years, Nissan CEO Hiroto Saikawa announced last month at the 2018 Detroit auto show that Infiniti will eventually become an electrified brand.

Starting from 2021, new Infiniti vehicles will either be all-electric or feature the automaker’s e-Power hybrid system.

Infiniti will launch its first all-electric vehicle in 2021.

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Great year for Nissan

Nissan has been recognised as a finalist at this year’s World Car of the Year awards in three categories; World Car of the Year, World Green Car and World Urban Car. 

It was double recognition for the Nissan LEAF, with the new-generation electric vehicle being named as a top 10 finalist in the prized 2018 World Car of the Year awards and also making the final four in the 2018 World Green Car category.

Revealed in Japan late last year, the Nissan LEAF has been completely reinvented, combining greater range with a dynamic new design and advanced technologies.

A jury of 82 motoring journalists selected the finalists by secret ballot based on their evaluation of each vehicle at exclusive drive events staged by the award’s organiser.

“The world is moving towards electric cars at a fast pace and the Nissan LEAF is one of the best,” said Paul Gover, one of Australia’s most respected automotive journalists and World Car of the Year judge.

“You don’t get onto the World Car of the Year final list if you are not extremely worthy.

“The LEAF is a car you have to look at when you think about the future of motoring.”

The 2018 Nissan Leaf.

The Nissan Micra is also a finalist in the 2018 World Urban Car category, this is the fifth time in the 14 year history of the World Car of the Year awards that a Nissan has been a finalist.

The first generation Nissan LEAF was named World Car of the Year in 2011, with the Nissan QASHQAI making the final in 2008 and 2015, and the GT-R in 2009.

Today’s announcement of the top 10 finalists kicks off the countdown for the 2018 World Car Awards prize-giving ceremony to be hosted by the New York International Auto Show on March 28.


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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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Nissan unveils ‘B2V’ research

Nissan announced their latest breakthrough research yesterday that enables vehicles to interpret signals from the driver’s brain – redefining how people interact with their cars.

The company’s Brain-to-Vehicle, or B2V, technology promises to speed up reaction times for drivers and will lead to cars that keep adapting to make driving more enjoyable. 

“When most people think about autonomous driving, they have a very impersonal vision of the future, where humans relinquish control to the machines. Yet B2V technology does the opposite, by using signals from their own brain to make the drive even more exciting and enjoyable,” said Nissan Executive Vice President Daniele Schillaci.

 “Through Nissan Intelligent Mobility, we are moving people to a better world by delivering more autonomy, more electrification and more connectivity.”

 This breakthrough from Nissan is the outcome of research into using brain decoding technology to predict a driver’s actions and detect discomfort.

By catching signs that the driver’s brain is about to initiate a movement – such as turning the steering wheel or pushing the accelerator pedal – driver assist technologies can begin the action more quickly. This can improve reaction times and enhance manual driving.

 “The potential applications of the technology are incredible, this research will be a catalyst for more Nissan innovation inside our vehicles in the years to come.”


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Car makers to develop next-gen batteries

Honda and Nissan are said to be developing next-generation solid-state batteries for electric vehicles.

By developing solid-state batteries the car makers can reduce their car’s charging time, expand their range of green cars and deliver longer driving ranges, all at a lower cost than lithium-ion batteries.

A Honda executive has said that the solid-state battery “has a huge potential” to become the key to boosting EVs.

“We’ve been researching all solid-state batteries,” Honda spokesman Teruhiko Tatebe said to the Japan Times. “At the moment we’re not developing them with another automaker.”

The solid-state battery “has a huge potential” to become the key to boosting EVs, a Honda executive said.

The carmaker is considering tying up with other companies to develop car batteries, but technical hurdles remain for mass production.

A growing number of automakers including Toyota Motor Corp  and Volkswagen AG are developing all solid-state batteries, which offer more capacity and better safety than conventional lithium-ion batteries by replacing their liquid electrolyte with a solid, conductive material. 

Last week Toyota said they were planning on teaming up with Panasonic in order to develop and produce lithium ion and next-generation solid-state batteries. 

If Toyota succeeds in commercialising solid-state batteries then it would go a long way to securing Panasonic’s industry leading position. It is currently the main supplier of electric batteries to Tesla.

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Efforts to remove federal tax credits

Nissan Motors remains undaunted by congressional efforts in the United States to remove federal tax credit for plug-in electric vehicles said head of Nissan’s operations in North America on Monday.

Nissan’s 2018 Leaf boasts a 40 per cent increase in battery range to around 240 km. The 2018 Leaf will start to hit dealerships around the world early in the new year with an asking price of around NZ$43,000.

The 2018 Nissan Leaf.

But that’s before a $7,500 federal tax credit that has been a major selling point for buyers of the previous version of the Leaf or other electric vehicles from companies like Tesla or General Motors.

The tax credit could disappear if the House version of a federal tax overhaul bill prevails in negotiations with the Senate.

Jose Munoz, the chairman of Nissan North America, said that there is a “very clear, strong natural demand” for electric vehicles even without the incentives.

“Obviously we welcome support to the EV business,” Munoz said. “At the same time, we’ve built a very strong foundation because we are global leaders on electric vehicles.”

The Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance announced in September that it plans to produce 12 new electric models by 2022 and that electric cars will make up 30 percent of its overall output.

“We’re going to continue betting on this,” Munoz said.


Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam said he expects sales of electric vehicles to continue to grow in the long term, though that pace could be slowed if the federal tax credit ends.

“It’s just a matter of how long it takes us to get to where the electric vehicle is the dominant method of propelling vehicles,” he said.

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Nissan sales show no improvement

The latest figures show that Nissan’s passenger car sales have nearly halved in Japan for the second month in a row as the car maker still struggles with a damaging inspection scandal. (more…)

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Nissan resumes production in Japan

Nissan plans to continue production of vehicles for its home market at five of its domestic factories after Japan’s transport ministry approved changes to the inadequate final-inspection procedures that prompted a major vehicle recall.

The company had suspended domestic production of all passenger cars earlier in October after noticing that uncertified technicians had been signing off on final inspections for decades.

This initiated a recall of around 1 million vehicles for investigation, including all light vehicles it produced for sale in Japan over the past three years.

Nissan said on Monday that its plants in Fukuoka, Kanagawa and Tochigi would resume production for the domestic market, along with plants operated by affiliate Nissan Shatai in Fukuoka and Kanagawa.

Nissan said it had corrected inconsistencies and that it was taking measures to improve training and testing processes for inspectors.

Japan’s transport ministry now requires certified inspectors to sign off on vehicle checks for cars sold in Japan. This is however not a step that is required for vehicles exported overseas.

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Nissan’s sales plummet amid scandal

Nissan Motor Co announced earlier this week that Japanese sales of new vehicles has dropped by approximately 50% in October compared to last years figures. 

Last month the discovery of improper final inspection procedures at Nissan Motor Co.’s domestic plants caused it to partly suspend production. 

Nissan didn’t provide exact figures for this month’s sales, but the car company sold 38,708 vehicles in Japan in October 2016.

The plants will resume production once the final inspection procedures have been brought in line with transport ministry requirements, a spokesman for the automaker said.

Nissan has completed those measures at one assembly plant and expects to have made similar changes at five other plants by the end of the week, he said.

This month was supposed to mark the unveiling of an electric-vehicle offensive for Nissan, who is eager to establish itself as the leader in the race to electrify its vehicle line-up.

Nissan is anticipated to outline a global EV sales push when it reports its earnings next week.

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