• Mar 9th 2010 at 9:06AM
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Nissan Leaf – Click above for high-res image gallery

According to BusinessWeek, Renault-Nissan's CEO Carlos Ghosn said recently that his company has 56,000 orders for the Leaf in the United States. The car will be available late this year, and Ghosn said that real mass production will start in 2012, when the alliance plans to have capacity to 500,000 electronic vehicles in Japan, Europe and the United States. Ghosn, who is totally bullish on electric vehicles, told BW that:
Frankly, I mean so far there is no competition. Let's be serious. It's not because someone is coming with a prototype and one car that this is competition. The question is how much capacity are you building.
We know that Nissan is pushing hard to get electric vehicles onto the road and that people are excited for the Leaf, but we can't help but wonder if something got lost in translation somewhere with that 56,000 pre-order number. Just a month ago, Nissan announced that 50,000 people had signed up to be on the reservation list and that pre-orders would not start until April. That list allows people to move to the head of the line when it comes time to order the Leaf, but it's not an official intent form.

[Source: BusinessWeek via Treehugger]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      Wow.... That's amazing! I'm so stoked that adoption for this vehicle is this high. Good for Nissan. I can't wait to start seeing these on the road.
      • 5 Years Ago
      The 2012 production capacity numbers here seem off by an order of magnitude - when common sense is applied here.

      Keep in mind that after all these years (more than a decade), Toyota (prior to all the current problems) was just getting Prius production numbers up to 450,000 a year global this year.

      Even with gasoline up above $4 or $5 gallon, I doubt there will be enough demand for 500,000 (less than 100 mile range) Leafs a year in 2012 - I'd love to be wrong, but it just doesn't add up.

      Maybe Ghosn was talking 50,000, that would make more sense and still be very aggressive in the marketplace. If they really do think they'll sell 500,000 Leaf's in the marketplace in 2012, god help them.
        • 5 Years Ago
        You seem to be confusing US prices and production with that in the world.
        Here in Europe petrol is already around $7/gal, so I doubt they will have trouble shifting their 200,000 share.
        Japan also has high prices.
        So most doubts would seem to refer to the US's 200,000 share.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Yeah, 56,000 orders is pretty impressive considering they aren't even taking orders yet, heh.

      We'll have to wait and see what happens when they announce the price. I'm thinking that pre-order number will explode to 150k+ if the car costs below $32,000.

      I'm excited. This is the 'model T' of electric cars, truly.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Hopefully it will lead to much better things to come!

        Let's hope the idiots on Autoblog (i.e. general populous) don't kill it.
      • 5 Years Ago
      let's hear a price first
      • 5 Years Ago
      I want one...I really hope it does well, we need this kind of technology fast...
      • 5 Years Ago
      This is great stuff -- I'm one of the people on that list!

      I think they *do* have some competition, though: the Th!nk City is on my list, as well, and it will be available in a similar time frame. The City is smaller (more to my liking) and less expensive (probably) and it will have a better range, given a very similar capacity battery pack and since it weighs about 1,100 pounds less.

      Sincerely, Neil
        • 5 Years Ago
        Neil ,
        here in Europe the Think City costs a whopping 36000 euro
        or $ 49000 ! silly money , and is probably why they have not
        sold many to private buyers outside Norway or Danmark where
        electric cars avoid the 100% car tax !

        On another note I spoke with the Nissan guys on the Leaf stand
        at the Geneva show last week, and they told me that here in Europe
        at least the Leaf would not be sold with the battery which would
        be leased to the customer separately !
        • 5 Years Ago
        I am also on the list for the Nissan Leaf.

        I'm hoping Nissan realizes its potential to make huge gains in the EV market if they set the price right. If they make it a pricey trophy car like the Volt then they will lose money as the customers rapidly head elsewhere. Aint competition grand!
      • 5 Years Ago
      This was a great article about the future of green vehicles. A great website that has more information about green vehicles is www.greencollareconomy.com. They also have a green vehicle directory at www.greencollareconomy.com/Green_Directory/green-transportation/
      • 5 Years Ago
      Stop repeating this misinformation. Nissan does not have 50,000 pre-orders, they have zero pre-orders right now. Nissan has issued a statement saying that the Business Week information was incorrect.

      What they do have is 50,000+ people signed up for the email list to be notified of news about the Leaf. That's not the same as an order, obviously.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Here is how teh plan breaks down:
        -Individuals sign up now for updates that put them on a list (curentlly growing very rapidly 70,000+)
        -In April, once the price is annouced, people get to put down a $100 refundable deposit, with people who are in one of the launch markets and who have already signed up going to the front of the list
        -In December, the first people in the launch markets will take delivery
        -Heading into 2012, when the LEAF will be built in the Tennessee as part of 500,000 unit global production capacity, everybody else who put down a deposit will be able to take delivery, followed by additional deliveries to dealers

        Now, some organizations and governments have an inside track and have already committed to purchasing vehicles, before they have been made to the public... with additional fleet customers anticipated.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I repeat: they have zero reservations as of right now. Not a single person has put a deposit down for the Nissan Leaf.

        When they do start taking "pre-orders" in April, it will be either $100 or $200 (which will include an evaluation of your home's electrical system to see if you can have a charging station installed).
        • 5 Years Ago
        How much deposit is required for Nissan to consider it a "reservation?" Just curious...
      • 5 Years Ago
      I know that Tesla and Fisker did take paid pre-orders, but would it be legal for Nissan to do the same thing? They did get an Agreement with Israel to provide 100K units, so maybe he is counting commercial & government fleet agreements and not consumer interest lists.

      In any case, Ghosn is right: there is no competition on pure EVs. Mitsubishi just doesn't have the capacity and their 100K vehicle deal with PSA doesn't specify a time frame, so it could be 25K units over 4 years for all we know. As for GM, they will want to amortize the Volt development before they commit to another drive-train.

      All the other automakers will be waiting to see how Nissan does before they fully commit themselves. Go Carlos!
        • 5 Years Ago
        Nissan can take paid pre-orders, however they would have to be refundable. I doubt they can tell most people when they will recieve their cars so they will probably wait until the nearer the on-sale date. they also don't want to give out the price until closer to that date. No sense killing the enthusiasm if the price comes in higher than has been speculated (30K).
      • 5 Years Ago
      The Seattle PI has Nissan now saying about 70,000 have signed up as of yesterday. Time to update your story! lol


      "About 70,000 people have already registered, said Mark Perry, Nissan North America's director of products and planning."
        • 5 Years Ago
        Why this obsession with numbers?

        There is one number I care about and that is the date that I'll have my Leaf sitting in my driveway.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I just wanted to add that there was a youtube video of a guy who interviewed Nissan on the last tour stop (NYC) where he said 38,000 people signed up. But interestingly, the CEO said about 50,000 about the same time. Then the CEO said 56,000 in Geneva. Now the Nissan's North American director is saying about 70,000.

        I'm just waiting for some unlazy reporter/blogger to finally call and ask "Why the discrepancy between all these numbers? Which is the right number?"

        • 5 Years Ago
        The more numbers, the more uptake of EV's, the more charging stations they'll have to build, etc, more economies of scale, cheaper EV's, more selection of EV's because the competition isn't going to let Nissan dominate the market forever, etc.

      • 5 Years Ago
      Hey Nissan. Here is a list of people who WILL buy a Nissan Leaf if you sell it in their city.
      If you want to include your intent to buy (Possible, Probable, Definite)

      Buy Intent = Definite
      City = Dallas

      (OK, anyone who wants to let Nissan know that if they offer the Leaf where you are you will buy one, add your city in your reply)
      • 5 Years Ago
      Nice. I hope that reflects a pretty firm intent by those people.

      I hope that increased production of batteries will push down the cost a bit.
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