"Electricity is the new fuel for cars, and the Nissan LEAF has the potential to transform the automotive industry and the way people drive," said Carlos Tavares, chairman, Nissan Americas. "Starting today, drivers in Oregon have the freedom to choose a future that produces zero tailpipe emissions, moves away from our dependence on fossil fuels, and represents the end of trips to the gas station. This Nissan LEAF delivery signifies the dawn of a movement that brings sustainable mobility to within our grasp."
For more than two years, Nissan has been working in partnership with the State of Oregon and the City of Portland to foster the development of electric vehicle-friendly policies and an EV-charging infrastructure.
"This is an exciting day for Oregon," said Gov. Ted Kulongoski. "The first electric vehicles are quietly rolling off the lots and onto our roads – showing the rest of the nation that we can make this transition to emissions-free vehicles."
"Portland’s national reputation as a proving ground for progressive transportation ideas is confirmed with the arrival of our first Nissan LEAF," said Portland Mayor Sam Adams. "This public-private partnership shows again that our local governments remain supportive of innovative companies working to create new, environmentally friendly markets."
Portland General Electric (PGE) also has been leading regional efforts for electric-vehicle adoption. Nissan and PGE are collaborating to serve their common customers such as Duncan.
"To be selected as one of the first launch markets for the Nissan LEAF speaks volumes to Oregonians’ commitment to sustainability," said Jim Piro, PGE’s president and CEO. "We’d like to thank Nissan, the state of Oregon, and all our partners who are collaborating to make EVs a reality for our customers like John Duncan who can now charge up his emissions-free vehicle at home for much less than he’d pay at the pump."
Oregon is a primary launch market for the Nissan LEAF, as well as a participant in The EV Project, a research and charging infrastructure deployment project. The largest of its kind ever undertaken, The EV Project is funded by a grant from the U.S. Department of Energy and administered by electric-vehicle charging company ECOtality.
The Oregon delivery is part of more than a week of festivities, as Nissan delivers the first Nissan LEAF vehicles to each of its primary launch markets in Northern and Southern California, Arizona, Oregon, Seattle and Tennessee. Nissan also is donating $25,000 to the World Wildlife Fund to mark the occasion.
The initial Nissan LEAF deliveries will be followed by a second shipment of Nissan LEAF electric vehicles scheduled to arrive on Dec. 20 and destined for consumer driveways in time for the holidays. Nissan is on track for a nationwide launch of the Nissan LEAF by 2012, with Hawaii and Texas next to roll out in early 2011. In order to fulfill interest and meet demand in initial launch markets, Nissan plans to reopen reservations in the first half of 2011 as well as shift timing of additional markets until the second half of 2011.
In North America, Nissan’s operations include automotive styling, engineering, consumer and corporate financing, sales and marketing, distribution and manufacturing. Nissan is dedicated to improving the environment under the Nissan Green Program 2010 and has been recognized as a 2010 ENERGY STAR® Partner of the Year by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.