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Nissan Leaf  (Source: Nissan Motors)
But Nissan makes it clear that "emissions-free" is their ultimate goal

Nissan is in the midst of working on expanding the environmental benefits of some of its vehicles by using pure electric batteries with no direct emissions – its efforts appear to be paying off. Of approximately 19,000 pre-orders and rising, 14,000 are from the United States, and 90 percent are conquest sales, meaning that Nissan has "stolen" potential sales or swayed loyal buyers from other auto brands. The automaker's conquest is "almost without comparison" and "few vehicles can capably convert loyal buyers over with this level of authority."

Even though the first year production of the Leaf is already sold out, not everyone is on the pure electric bandwagon, which is leading Nissan to consider developing extended range vehicles in the future. 

EV skeptics have stressed concerns about electric vehicles' range and ability to be driven on long road trips. While there is a growing infrastructure in certain cities around the world, and EV's like the Nissan Leaf can travel up to 100 miles with a full charge (under optimum conditions), Nissan's Senior Vice President for Sales and Marketing, Brian Carolin, mentioned that "extended range vehicles could eventually join the pure battery electric Leaf in the marque's stable." 

The Chevrolet Volt, another one of the featured EV's of 2011, runs 40 miles on an emission-free electric charge, but then travels hundreds of additional miles on a range-extending gas generator via a single tank of gas. At the Automotive News Green Car Conference last week, General Motors' Director of Hybrid and Electric Vehicle Development Micky Bly noted that his company's approach to EV's was "to make sure they could be primary vehicles" and that "the Volt is intended to be a vehicle that can operate emissions-free most of the time yet still be able to handle road trips when needed." Nissan may develop a similar range-extending model like this in order to supply vehicles that the masses will be able to feel comfortable with. 

Those who have submitted pre-orders for the Leaf have paid a refundable $99 at this point, but some believe as more money and risk is involved closer to purchase/lease time, the numbers of these pre-orders may change. 

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Thank you for this public service, Nissan
By klstay on 6/24/2010 9:03:28 AM , Rating: 2
It appears they have managed to sell this thing to all of those people who were the ones born in their minute.

Also, I find the "emission free" goal amusing. Unless Scotty is up there beaming down all that electricity from the Enterprise "for free" then it is coming from somewhere!

And unless he is also beaming down the batteries magically transformed from "human emissions" in the replicator they have to be manufactured somewhere from something using (you guessed it) electricity which is again NOT appearing out of thin air.

Finally, unless our dear Mr. Scott is also willing to beam all the used batteries into the sun for us (again for FREE) what do folks plan on doing with all those things?

I switched to CNG almost 4 years ago and chuckle to myself every time I see some chowderhead in an EV Hybrid. Lotteries aside, these things and their pure electric brethren are the biggest scam ever to have been foisted on the mathematically challenged sector of the public.

By Nutzo on 6/24/2010 10:45:43 AM , Rating: 1
The Battery tech STILL has a long way to go. We need about 10x the range (350-400 miles per charge) and 1/2 the cost to become competative with gas powered cars.

With current Tech, the volt is a better solution, but I think they could get away with a lower power generator. The current design generates enough power to drive 80+ mph, with a fully loaded car, until the gas tank is empty.

What they need is a extended range switch that when enabled will keep the battery at a full charge, instead of only charging when the battery is almost depleated. This would extend the range when driving at freeway speeds, even if the lower powered generator could not keep up at freeway speeds. You might eventually have to pull over and take a break (like stop for lunch) when the generator finishes charging the battery, but at least you wouldn't be looking for a plug.

By monkeyman1140 on 6/24/2010 12:22:46 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah we should have all switched to CNG decades ago, but the power of the oil industry precluded that from happening.

"Google fired a shot heard 'round the world, and now a second American company has answered the call to defend the rights of the Chinese people." -- Rep. Christopher H. Smith (R-N.J.)
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