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Nissan planning to bring the Leaf electric car to India

July 17, 2014, 12:21 PM IST by Pratheek Kunder
Nissan planning to bring the Leaf electric car to India

Nissan Motor Company has shown interest in getting their best-selling electric car, the Leaf, to India. In order to achieve this, the Japanese manufacturer is open to collaborate with local manufacturers to provide charging facilities for this vehicle.

One of the major roadblocks for electric vehicles in India is the availability of correct infrastructure. Without a proper charging facility, it becomes impossible for these vehicles to be driven on Indian roads. EVs  have limited driving distance and need to be charged regularly. The national electric mobility mission plan 2020 (NEMMP 2020) unveiled by our last prime minister, outlines India’s vision and provides the roadmap for achieving penetration of efficient and environment friendly electric vehicles in India by 2020. The progress on this development plan is still unclear. 

Currently, Mahindra is the only company that manufactures electric cars in India . While it’s been a while since the e2o has been launched, it is still not in good demand due to lack of subsidy and increased taxation in the sector. Nissan uses the franchise model to charge electric cars in Europe while in the US; the infrastructure is largely created by the government. In India, it wants to emulate the Japanese model where the company has a collaboration with domestic car makers — Toyota, Honda and Mitsubishi. The company claims that this is the fastest and the easiest way of setting up charging stations. But the company refused to specify if they have already contacted Mahindra for this collaboration, which we believe should happen.

“We are actively looking at the Leaf for India.I think there is a lot of potential for that car here.There is no doubt electric cars are the future. The product is there what we need is infrastructure. Charging is a big challenge. We are open to collaboration with local manufacturers on that.”said Andy Palmer, chief planning officer, Nissan Motor Corp.

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