Renault-Nissan Alliance forms electric vehicles partnership with state of Massachusetts

The Renault-Nissan Alliance today announced that Nissan is entering into an agreement with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to advance zero-emission mobility throughout the state by promoting the development of an electric-vehicle charging network and policies to support widespread adoptions of electric cars.

The announcement was made at the Museum of Science in Boston, a stop on the Nissan LEAF Zero Emission Tour, and helps pave the way for the 2010 introduction of electric car Nissan LEAF, the industry’s first all-electric, zero-emission car designed for the mass market.

“The Renault-Nissan Alliance has committed to becoming a global leader in zero emissions,” said Carlos Tavares, Chairman, Nissan Americas. “Zero-emission mobility is the ultimate solution for addressing questions of climate change and energy independence. We applaud the State of Massachusetts for leading the way for the reduction of greenhouse gases. We are looking forward to bringing the Nissan LEAF, the only mass-marketed all-electric zero-emission car at an affordable price, to Massachusetts.”

As part of the agreement, Nissan and the State of Massachusetts 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 partners 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 statewide.

The agreement is part of the Commonwealth’s broad initiative to encourage development and deployment of electric-vehicle technology, consistent with its leading commitment to greenhousegas emission reductions.

“Electric-vehicle technology is a significant way to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions and expand our clean energy economy,” said Energy and Environment Affairs Secretary Ian Bowles. “We look forward to the day when it’s just as routine – or more so – to plug in the car for recharging as it is to fill up the gas tank.”

Nissan, along with alliance partner Renault, is the only automaker committed to making allelectric vehicles available to the mass market on a global scale. Nissan LEAF, a five-passenger all-electric car, will be available for private and fleet customers. It is being launched in the U.S., Japan and Europe in late 2010.

Nissan has spearheaded a holistic approach to zero-emission mobility by working with states, municipalities, utility companies and other partners, to prepare markets and infrastructure. Nissan has formed more than a dozen partnerships in the United States, in areas including State of Tennessee, the State of Oregon, Sonoma County, San Diego and San Francisco in California, Phoenix and Tucson, Ariz., Washington D.C., Seattle, with the City of Orlando and Orlando Utilities Commission, with Progress Energy in Raleigh, N.C., and with the City of Houston and Houston-based Reliant Energy.

Nissan also is working with AeroVironment for the supply and installation of home charging stations, creating a one-stop shop for the Nissan LEAF and its charging equipment. The Nissan LEAF uses lithium ion batteries.

Through the 24-city Nissan LEAF Zero-Emission Tour, which stopped in Massachusetts today, Nissan has been showcasing the electric vehicle and battery technology as well as the company’s zero-emission mobility objectives.

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. 

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 6,085,058 units in 2009. The objective of the Alliance is to rank among the world’s top three vehicle manufacturers in terms of quality, technology and profitability.