Communauto, a car sharing service in the Canadian province of Quebec, announced today that they are planning to add 50 Nissan Leaf electric cars to their fleet as soon as the vehicle becomes available in Canada in late 2011.
Communauto is partnering with both municipal and provincial governments, utility companies and Nissan Canada, Communauto is able to offer the cars, as well as adequate recharging stations in major Quebec areas such as Montreal, Quebec City and the outlying suburbs, as well as Gatineau, a suburb of Ottawa, Ontario.
Traffic in Quebec City and Montreal is congested, with narrow, winding European style cobblestone lanes and one-way streets prominent in both cities. Gas prices are also significantly higher than the rest of Canada, with gas regularly over $4 a gallon. The compact Leaf is well suited to these conditions, although the notoriously brutal winters in both cities may prove to be the ultimate test for EV technology.
Hit the jump to read the official press release.
Carsharing pioneer to add first all-electric real-world car to fleet
Montréal, Québec (June 1, 2010) – Communauto, one of the world’s largest and North America’s first carsharing service, announced today a commitment to add 50 Nissan LEAFs to its fleet when the vehicle is available to the Canadian market before the end of 2011.
“By offering the all-electric Nissan LEAF next year, Communauto is reconfirming its environmental commitment to our more than 20,000 users,” said Benoît Robert, President of Communauto. “Our customers will soon be able to share the only real-world car with zero emissions and that brings together all the comfort, style and practicality that they are looking for.”
Communauto plans to integrate the Nissan LEAF into its fleet with the technical support of the Centre National du Transport Avancé (CNTA), at some locations in and around Montréal and Québec City. This is the first and largest all-electric self-service carsharing project to be announced in Canada.
“Nissan’s agreement to supply the LEAF to Communauto was facilitated by our MOU partnership with the Government of Québec, Hydro-Québec, Montréal, Québec City and the Agence de l’efficacité énergétique du Québec. The MOU and agreement with Communauto are a testament to the importance of establishing the strong relationships required to build a zero-emission community,” said Mark Grimm, President, Nissan Canada Inc.
Hydro-Québec will be implementing the charging infrastructure Communauto will need to keep the Nissan LEAFs fully charged when carsharers are on the go next year.
“When it comes to transportation, electricity is the way of the future. Thanks to the clean, renewable and reliable energy that we provide, Hydro-Québec can offer Quebecers a healthier environment,” explained Thierry Vandal, Hydro-Québec’s President and CEO. “The company is pleased to play an active role in transportation electrification and to contribute to the ecologically responsible initiative being launched by Communauto and Nissan.”
Communauto, the oldest carsharing service in North America, is a company with an urban, social and environmental mission that serves more than 20,000 users thanks to a fleet of some 1,000 self-service cars, available 24/7, in combination with public transit and active transportation modes. Communauto vehicles are found in more than 315 stations, located in Montréal, Québec City, Gatineau and Sherbrooke. For more information about Communauto and its network of parking stations, visit: www.communauto.com.
About Nissan Canada Inc.
Nissan Canada Inc. (NCI) is the Canadian sales, marketing and distribution subsidiary of Nissan Motor Limited and Nissan North America, Inc. With offices in Kirkland (QC), Vancouver (BC), Mississauga (ON), NCI directly employs 250 full-time staff. There are 156 independent Nissan dealerships and 29 Infiniti retailers across Canada. Nissan is dedicated to improving the environment under the Nissan Green Program 2010, whose key priorities are reducing CO2 emissions, cutting other emissions and increasing recycling. More information about Nissan in Canada and the complete line of Nissan and Infiniti vehicles can be found online at www.nissan.ca and www.infiniti.ca.
Hydro-Québec generates, transmits and distributes electricity. Its sole shareholder is the Québec government. It uses mainly renewable generating options, in particular hydropower, and supports the development of wind energy through purchases from independent power producers. It also conducts research in energy-related fields, such as energy efficiency. For more information on Hydro-Québec, please visit www.hydroquebec.com . For details on its electric transportation plans, visit www.hydroquebec.com/transportation-electrification.