Having left Japan just one day before the tsunami-inducing earthquake wreaked havoc, a large shipment of Nissan LEAF Battery Electric Vehicles (BEV) has just arrived in Long Beach, Calif.
Nissan’s Luna Spirit vehicle-carrying transport ship was safely on the open ocean when a 500 MPH wave passed under it, at about 3-inches high.
About a week after the tsunami, Nissan announced more than 1,500 LEAFs were either in transit or in a U.S. port.
With the estimated 1,500 new BEVs now in the U.S., this will be make possible the first substantial delivery of LEAFs to the U.S. which at this juncture have had less than stellar sales.
Short supply has been said to be the primary reason why a waiting list of about 2,000 U.S. pre-orders remains unfilled.
In January, Nissan reported 87 LEAFS delivered, and in the 10-percent shorter month of February, just 67 LEAFS were sold. In all, just 173 LEAFS have been delivered to the U.S. according to the Japan Auto Dealers Association (JADA).
This U.S. allotment plus 3,657 LEAF sales primarily in Japan will mean over 5,000 LEAFs will have been produced. This makes it one of the highest production BEVs yet produced. Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn has previously stated that plug-in vehicles will account for a quarter of Nissan’s sales by 2020, and the LEAF represents the first step towards that goal.