Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn with Leaf EV – Click above for high-res image gallery
Will Nissan's upcoming Leaf electric car compete directly with the 2011 Chevrolet Volt? Well, that depends on who you ask. Apparently, Nissan head Carlos Ghosn doesn't believe the two eco-friendly automobiles will be competing on a large scale. Says Ghosn:
Ghosn wasn't necessarily referring directly to the Chevy Volt when he made those comments at the Geneva Motor Show, but the sentiment would surely include General Motors' extended-range electric vehicle by proxy. We'd imagine that a good deal of Leaf or Volt buyers would consider the other car a competitor for their hard-earned dollars."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... What I am sure is that in 2011, I am going to be the only one on the market."
If the issue between the two electric cars is production numbers, Nissan certainly takes the (currently theoretical) win as it plans to build 500,000 Leaf EVs by 2012. By way of contrast, GM has been mum on actual production goals for its Volt program, but we know the initial launch at the end of 2010 will be a comparatively small one.