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27.02.2013 - Cars THE NEW NISSAN LEAF: THE NEXT CHAPTER
- European production to start soon
- Greater choice with three models in the range
- Technical improvements deliver greater driving range
It might look broadly similar to the first pure electric vehicle to win the European Car of the Year award, but under the skin New LEAF has been comprehensively improved and enhanced.
Until now, the world's best selling pure electric vehicle has been built solely in Japan. But as production gets underway in Europe and North America, more than 100 changes have been made to the multi-award winning car.
Improvements include an extended driving range, greater recyclability, more interior space, better charging performance, more equipment and, with three versions now available, greater choice.
Subtle styling changes to the nose of the car have improved its already impressive aerodynamic efficiency.
Many of the changes have come as a direct result of feedback from pioneering LEAF owners. With some of most active Internet forums of any car-owning group, LEAF drivers have become enthusiastic advocates of zero-emission mobility and of the car itself - LEAF enjoys the highest customer satisfaction rating of any Nissan model with a score of 93 per cent.
As well as discussions about various aspects of life with a LEAF, the forums are used by owners to offer tips and hints to fellow users, as well as to suggest a number of improvements that could be made to the game-changing car.
By monitoring this feedback and by holding regular owner events to gain further input, Nissan has incorporated many of the suggestions into New LEAF.
New LEAF, which goes on sale in Europe beginning mid-year, marks an important milestone in Nissan's global zero-emission leadership. It will soon be joined by pure electric versions of the award-winning NV200, to be called e-NV200, in both light commercial van and seven-seat combi versions. Development is also underway on a dedicated EV taxi based on the e-NV200. An Infiniti EV is expected in 2015.