5. Nissan Leaf Goes on Sale
2011 will forever be remembered as a milestone year for the electric car. Sure we’ve seen EVs hit the road before, but only in small batches or as pilot projects. Nissan’s decision to bring the Leaf EV to market in 2011 marks the first time a mainstream automaker has released an electric vehicle for general consumption. Perhaps most surprising is that it’s actually a solid machine (read AutoGuide’s review here).
Nissan targeted total sales of 10,000 Leafs in North America this year, and the car is currently on schedule to meet that goal. Global sales will nearly double that number.
Since the Leaf entered the market, it’s been joined by competitors like the Mitsubishi i and soon both the Honda Fit EV and Ford Focus Electric.