Nissan have delivered 100,000 examples of their popular EV, the Nissan LEAF after just three years on sale. For what may still be considered a niche car, these figures are much higher than their nearest rival.
The 100,000th car was a top spec Nissan LEAF Tekna in white, which was sold to a British buyer based in Hampshire. Guillaume Cartier, Senior Vice President Sales and Marketing, Nissan Europe, said:
“For such a revolutionary car, to achieve this sales milestone in such a short space of time is a major achievement. Don’t forget that when Nissan LEAF was launched in 2010, the charging infrastructure was in its infancy. But that didn’t deter the pioneers who immediately appreciated the benefits of a purpose-designed electric vehicle. Three years on, many are already on their second Nissan LEAF. With five seats, practical back doors and class-leading boot space volume, the Nissan LEAF is the EV for the real world. Today, meanwhile, many cities have growing networks of quick chargers and this is helping accelerate sales of the multi-award winning LEAF.”
To celebrate the sales achievement, Nissan has produced a unique version of Nissan LEAF with 100,000 very special optional extras, representing each sale. The car is decorated in 50,000 two pence Sterling coins from the UK and 50,000 two cent Euro coins from Europe. The choice of coins reflect how cost efficient Nissan LEAF is to run – just £0.02 per mile and less than €0.02 per kilometre.
Creating the coin covered Nissan LEAF took a specialist team of three people a full seven days to complete. Half the car is covered in Sterling and the other in Euros with the word ‘LEAF’ highlighted by the use of three layers of coins. The coins are not likely to be offered as a regular option however: together they add a substantial 504kg to the overall weight of the car.
The coin covered Nissan LEAF has been on display at Martins of Winchester, the Nissan dealer which sold the actual 100,000th car to dentist Brett Garner, a self-confessed ‘technology freak’ whose practice is based in nearby Fareham on the South Coast of England. Brett was prompted to consider the car by a LEAF-owning friend, who praised the car not just for its zero emissions and advanced technology, but also for its low running costs.
“He said he was saving a fortune. My wife wasn’t convinced initially but I ran through the finances with her – the low cost of maintenance, insurance, fuel and so on – and she softened a little. But when she used the car to make a 500-mile round trip, she was converted. The journey took a little longer than normal with a stop for a quick charge top-up on both legs… now she insists on using the LEAF a couple of days a week. We have another conventional car at home but that only manages 25mpg so we use it sparingly as it costs so much to refuel.”
The LEAF is perfectly suited to Brett’s regular daily commute – a 50-mile round trip – and the Garner’s have had a Polar charging point installed at their home by British Gas.
The LEAF’s sales successes confirm Nissan as the world’s leading seller of pure electric vehicles and they say underlines its pioneering role in redefining the way people think about future mobility. As Nissan is part of the Renault-Nissan alliance too, the alliance produces a combined EV range like no other manufacturer currently offers. As such, both Renault and Nissan are ahead of the game where the likes of Volkswagen have mentioned their intent and aim to takeover their market share by introducing cars such as the e-Golf and e-up!.
“Nissan LEAF is a pioneer in every sense and over the last three years has done a great deal to change attitudes towards electric vehicles – indeed some of the best Nissan LEAF ‘salespeople’ are our highly satisfied owners who praise the car whenever they can. We are confident the next 100,000 global sales will come even quicker.”
The 99,999th Nissan LEAF was sold to an American lady, Amy Eichenberger of Charlottesville, Virginia, USA.
“As an architect, the style first got my attention, and I loved the concept of zero emissions. I’d been told once I drove a Mercedes I’d never drive anything else again. I don’t need fancy, but I do appreciate the solid feel and craftsmanship of a luxury vehicle, and I get that in the LEAF. The general fuel economy out there is unimpressive and many of them felt tin-canny. I didn’t even want to look at anything in the 20 MPG range. I considered the VW Jetta TDI, Toyota Prius, Honda CRV and a couple of Subaru wagons, and I always came back to the Nissan LEAF. Everything else seemed stuck in the past”
Amy ultimately chose a LEAF S in Glacier White. Her commute is about 10 miles to the university each day and most of her errand-running is around the city—well under the LEAF’s estimated range of 84 miles on a full charge.
Source; Nissan press release