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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Nissan Leaf to cost $25K in US after tax credit

Nissan Motor Co., aiming to be the biggest seller of electric cars, said its battery-powered Leaf will cost $25,280 after a U.S. federal incentive, a price that puts it in competition with Toyota Motor Corp.’s Prius hybrid.

The compact hatchback that arrives in the U.S. in December will have a $32,780 base price, before a $7,500 tax credit, said Trisha Jung, Nissan’s chief marketing manager for U.S. electric vehicle sales. Added incentives, such as a $5,000 rebate in California for electric car buyers, cuts the price even further.

Nissan is delivering an “affordable mass-market vehicle,” Jung said in an interview in Los Angeles yesterday. After five years, including energy costs, Leaf will “end up being about $150 under Honda’s Civic and $1,000 under Prius, before you include any state incentives,” she said.

Leasing the Leaf may be the most appealing option for many U.S. consumers, Jung said. “We’re able to pass along the full benefit of the federal tax in the lease,” she said. “We’re looking at a monthly payment that will be $349, or just $19 over the Civic or Prius.”

Leaf production starts this year in Japan. Nissan will make the first deliveries there in December for a price of 3.76 million yen ($40,650), or 2.99 million yen after a government subsidy of 770,000 yen, the carmaker said today in Yokohama. By comparison, Mitsubishi Motor Corp.’s i-MiEV electric car sells for 4.6 million yen before subsidies. The Prius starts at 2.05 million yen in Japan.

Nissan plans to sell 6,000 of the cars this fiscal year in Japan and begin mass production in 2012, the company said.

The automaker is also preparing to build the small car in the U.S. and the U.K. Nissan promises that the lithium-ion battery-powered model will be able to go 100 miles (160 kilometers) on a full charge.

Nissan starts taking reservations for the Leaf on April 20. Paying $99 buys you a place in line when Nissan starts building the cars in September. The first cars roll into showrooms in December. and the company is aiming for 20,000 advance orders.

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1 comment:

Batjag said...

This is a gamechanger.

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