At the U.S. launch of the Nissan LEAF EV tour on Friday, the automaker announced a partnership with Reliant Energy to promote the build out of a suitable infrastructure for the vehicles. The two companies will create plans to promote electric vehicle charging anywhere and everywhere, including home, work and in public places. Given that most electric vehicles that are remotely affordable for the foreseeable future will likely have limited range, the ability to do opportunistic charging wherever the car stops will be critical to consumer adoption. The partners will coordinate with local agencies to ensure that charging networks use common elements and are appropriately located. Nissan will also provide supplies of the LEAF to areas serviced by Reliant starting in late 2010. From Los Angeles, the LEAF will continue to 21 other cities in the U.S. and Canada for the remainder of the tour.
11.13.2009 , LOS ANGELES
RENAULT-NISSAN ALLIANCE FORGES ZERO-EMISSION VEHICLE AGREEMENT WITH RELIANT ENERGY
Nissan LEAF Zero-Emission Tour kicks off in Los Angeles
The Renault-Nissan Alliance today announced that Nissan and Reliant Energy of Houston, Texas, one of the major competitive electricity providers in the nation, have forged an agreement to advance zero-emission mobility in the United States. The announcement helps pave the way for the 2010 introduction of Nissan LEAF, the industry's first all-electric, zero-emission car designed for the mass market. The company expects to begin sales in late 2010. Reliant is a subsidiary of NRG Energy, Inc. (NYSE: NRG), one of the largest electricity generators in the United States.
Nissan President and CEO Carlos Ghosn announced the agreement today at the kickoff of the Nissan LEAF Zero-Emission Tour, at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, marking the first North American appearance of Nissan LEAF.
The vehicle debut was followed by a panel discussion representing the key interests of the environmental, energy and air-quality communities. Participants included Ghosn, Mary D. Nichols, Chairman, California Air Resources Board; David Crane, President & CEO, NRG Energy, of which Reliant is a subsidiary; and Patricia Monahan, Deputy Director, Clean Vehicles Program and Director of the California Office, Union of Concerned Scientists.
"The Renault-Nissan Alliance has committed to becoming a global leader in zero emissions," said Ghosn, who also is chairman and CEO of Renault. "Together, Nissan and Reliant Energy share the vision that electric vehicles offer the best solution to reducing CO2 emissions. The Nissan LEAF is the only all-electric, zero-emission vehicle that will be available to drivers on a mass-market scale and at an affordable price."
As part of the agreement, Nissan and Reliant Energy will develop plans to promote a charging infrastructure for electric cars that encourages home and workplace charging, as well as a public charging infrastructure. The companies will work to coordinate the establishment of policies and help streamline charging infrastructure deployment. Nissan also has agreed to make available a supply of electric vehicles to Reliant and in its areas of operation.
"This agreement with Nissan is another part of our comprehensive effort to speed up the adoption of broad-based electric-powered transportation ecosystem," said David Crane, CEO of NRG.
"We can now see a clear path to having thousands – even hundreds of thousands – of zero-emission vehicles on Texas roads in the next several years," said Jason Few, President of Reliant Energy.
The Los Angeles debut marked the first stop on a nationwide tour of LEAF. The Nissan LEAF Zero-Emission Tour will make stops in 22 cities, in 11 states, the District of Columbia, and Vancouver, Canada, offering the opportunity for interested drivers, media, civic partners, businesses and university students to learn more about Nissan LEAF and the benefits of zero-emission driving. Los Angeles-area stops also include Santa Monica, Glendale and the University of Southern California campus. Details can be found at www.nissanusa.com/leaf-electric-car.
Nissan, along with alliance partner Renault, is the only automaker committed to making all-electric vehicles available to the mass market on a global scale. Through the Nissan LEAF Zero-Emission Tour, Nissan will be showcasing the electric vehicle and battery technology as well as the company's zero-emission mobility objectives. Nissan is also furthering the development of an electric-vehicle infrastructure through agreements with the State of Tennessee, the State of Oregon, Sonoma County, San Diego, Phoenix, Tucson, Washington D.C., Seattle, Raleigh, Vancouver, and Mexico City.
Nissan North America
In North America, Nissan's operations include automotive design, engineering, consumer and corporate financing, sales and marketing, distribution and manufacturing. 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 on the Nissan LEAF and zero-emission mobility can be found at www.nissanusa.com/leaf-electric-car.
The Renault-Nissan Alliance has begun zero-emission vehicle initiatives in Kanagawa Prefecture and Yokohama in Japan, as well as in Mexico, Israel, Denmark, Portugal, Monaco, the UK, France, Switzerland, Ireland, China and Hong Kong. The Renault-Nissan Alliance, founded in 1999, sold 6,090,304 vehicles in 2008. The objective of the Alliance is to rank among the world's top three vehicle manufacturers in terms of quality, technology and profitability.