Even as GM auctions off its first production Chevy Volt for charity, green car rival Nissan announced that the all-electric Leaf will go on sale in Japan on December 20. This will be followed by the United States, also in December, and in select European markets in early 2011. Release in other global markets is set for 2012.
The price of the Leaf in Japan will start at 3,764,250 yen, including the consumption tax. Japanese drivers are eligible to receive up to 780,000 yen through government EV incentives for 2010, making the net price of the Nissan electric car starting from 2,984,250 yen. The vehicle also reportedly gets some other nice tax breaks in Japan “to promote the diffusion of environmentally friendly vehicles,” thereby fully exempting it from the automobile acquisition tax and automobile weight tax until 2011, as well as qualifying for a special “automobile green tax scheme” which reduces the auto tax by 50% for one year starting from the next fiscal year following registration.
Nissan will be offering for Japanese buyers a special support program for the Leaf. This program includes EV-IT communication charge, maintenance support such as regular inspections and the first car safety inspection, charging at Nissan dealers, discount service for Nissan Rentacar and emergency support in case of trouble – at the monthly rate of 1,500 yen.
About 2,200 Japanese Nissan dealers will be a source of 200-volt charging for the Leaf, while around 200 of these as well will be equipped with quick chargers that can charge the battery up to 80% of its full capacity in about 30 minutes. It is said at least one quick-charge unit is available within a 40-kilometer radius throughout the country for the convenience of Leaf drivers.
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