With no official presence at the Detroit Auto Show, Nissan couldn’t resist showcasing its new Leaf electric car. On display alongside several other electric models in an area of the show dubbed Electric Avenue, Nissan claims that the Leaf is no concept, but an actual production model. It certainly looks the part, with a production quality exterior and interior, high-tech features and plenty of functionality.
The Leaf is powered by lithium-ion battery packs and is rated at 80kW/280Nm, (107-hp and 207 ft-lbs of torque), which should make this sub-compact a sporty little car.
Nissan says it will be able to drive 100 miles on a single charge. The batteries will be able to be charged up to 80 percent in less than 30 minutes with a special quick charger, or in roughly eight hours through a standard 200V outlet. Nissan says that through extensive research the 100 mile range will be suitable for 70 percent of car buyers
Next year 5,000 vehicles will be available in five U.S. markets: the Phoenix-Tucson region of Arizona, Oregon, San Diego, Seattle and Tennessee. Fleet sales will also be offered in 2010, while full retails sales are planned for 2012.