Nissan LEAF

Electric, News, City Car

Nissan's European electric taxi tally tops 500

A deal to supply a Hungarian taxi firm has brought the total number of Nissan electric taxis on European roads to over 550.

Green Lite Taxi Kft., based in Budapest, has purchased 65 Nissan LEAFs in a bid to become Hungary's largest zero emission fleet. 

Ors Levay, CEO of Green Lite Taxi Kft., which has installed seven quick chargers within the city to power the franchise, said: "We are delighted to be the first taxi company in Hungary to go 100 percent electric and the 199 km range means we only need to charge our taxis once during a shift. Along with the large savings on fuel and maintenance, the Nissan LEAF is very smooth to drive and almost silent, which means a more enjoyable journey for my customers and the drivers say typical 10 hour shifts are less tiresome."

Nissan delivered over 100 electric vehicles to taxi companies across Europe in 2015, making it the best-selling manufacturer of pure electric taxis. 

In Estonia, a LEAF owned by taxi company, Elektritakso, is said to have clocked up over 218,000 kilometres (135,459 miles) on its original battery pack, showcasing its durability and reliability.

In total, there are 80 electric taxis in Estonia, whilst in Lithuania, Nissan is set to deliver its first eight electric taxis to the Smart Taxi Company, based in the country's capital, Vilnius, for late 2015.

Nissan electric vehicles - which include the LEAF and the e-NV200, a passenger and light commercial vehicle - are becoming increasingly popular among European taxi businesses, with the Netherlands and the UK topping Nissan's e-taxi league table.

The newly launched 30 kWh LEAF is expected to be popular with taxi firms as it will enable drivers to travel 25 percent further than the standard vehicle.

Gareth Dunsmore, Director of Electric Vehicles for Nissan Europe, said: "We are so proud to be announcing this all-important milestone. Nissan has already delivered 30 percent more e-taxis this year than in 2014 and this figure is constantly increasing, as more taxi companies realise the benefits of becoming 100 percent electric."

Electric, Hybrid, News

Nissan LEAF tests eVADER pedestrian recognition software

Nissan has taken a leading role in the European Union-funded project 'eVADER' - to create an audible pedestrian alert system for electric cars.

With vehicles driven in electric mode, either hybrid or pure electric vehicles considerably quieter than combustion engined cars, they constitute a safety hazard for pedestrians and bicyclists in traffic. The eVADER project was founded to tackle the problem, with the help of many partners alongside Nissan including Renault, the Peugeot Citroen group and Continental tires to name a few.

In a move to assist pedestrian recognition of electric vehicles (EVs), Nissan has collaborated in the creation of a potential next generation pedestrian alert technology which produces effective and targetable audible cues to alert vulnerable road users to the presence of a nearby EV, whilst having minimal impact on noise pollution levels.

Pedestrian alert technology is currently a hot topic, as growing sales of EVs have led to discussions over the pros and cons of quiet EVs. The low sound levels have been heralded as a strong benefit, as they could contribute to a drastic reduction in noise pollution.

In 2010 Nissan introduced its LEAF - the first mass-market, all-electric EV - which has Approaching Vehicle Sound for Pedestrians (VSP), fitted as standard equipment. As a leading partner in the eVADER project, Nissan drew on its EV expertise to integrate the range of technologies provided by other consortium members and Nissan into the demonstration vehicle, and worked to ensure that the sounds created were clearly audible, whilst having as little impact as possible on ambient noise levels.

The sound created not only had to be directionally beamed at targeted pedestrians, it also had to keep annoyance levels to a minimum. Siren-like noises were ruled out at an early stage, as they were found to be irritating, loud and, in some cases, emotionally upsetting to other road users.

The final version of the system features a camera built into the windscreen, which is programmed to recognise pedestrians, cyclists and other road users. On detection of a road user, six loudspeakers directionally beam sound at the target to alert them of the presence of the EV. The sound is up to five decibels lower than the sound of a conventional petrol or diesel engine vehicle. Nissan then built this system into a LEAF for real-life trials, and the vehicle was used to showcase the completed alert system at a concluding event in Barcelona in December 2014, where it was well-received by the visually-impaired community.

David Quinn, Nissan's e-VADER Project Leader said: "Pedestrian safety is of the utmost importance to Nissan, which is why we already have a pedestrian alert installed in our EVs as a preventative measure. As leaders in the EV market, we were keen to use our considerable experience to examine possible systems for future development in this field. Our objective has been to find an optimum balance between ensuring the cars are detectable, whilst retaining the reduction in noise pollution, which is one of the great benefits that our EVs offer."

The research and results collated from this project form reference material for future research into this area, and it is likely that it will be utilised to shape future EU legislation on EV pedestrian alert sounds.

Electric, Hatchback, News

Nissan adds Acenta+ to LEAF range

Nissan has added a new Acenta+ model to its all-electric LEAF line-up.

With the LEAF range expanding to four trim grades, the new model slots in between the Acenta and range-topping Tekna and features a 'significant specification boost' over the standard model. The new model is equipped with a 6.6kW on-board charger as standard - which was previously available only as an option - as well as a Mode-3 32amp (EVSE) cable. The 6.6kW charger enables a 0-100 per cent charge in just four hours. Acenta+ models also include new 17-inch Autech wheels which are finished with distinctive blue accents on the offset spokes.

Commenting on the addition of the new Acenta+ to the UK LEAF range, James Wright, Managing Director, Nissan Motor GB said: "We're delighted to add a new member to the LEAF family in the UK. More than 9,500 LEAFs have already been sold here and Nissan is the undisputed leader in the EV market. This new model delivers exceptional value and showcases the LEAF's incredible technology and engineering."

On sale from today, prices for the Nissan LEAF Acenta+ with the additional equipment start at £29,740 (£1,150 more than the standard Acenta). With the Government's Plug-in Car Grant applied, the price falls to £24,740.