Nissan Chief Wary but Optimistic Over Electric Vehicles

Nov 30, 2009

We’ve spent a lot of time talking about the benefits of electric and hybrid vehicles for fleet operations. But when the time comes to adopt new technologies, will people really be ready to make the switch?


 Automotive Fleet provides some interesting insight:


Carlos Ghosn, head of the Nissan-Renault alliance, says that consumers’ adoption of electric vehicles will be a gradual process, with traditional gasoline-powered cars dominating the market for many years to come.


Ghosn predicted that electric vehicles would most likely account for only about 10 percent of vehicles sold by 2020. Gasoline, diesel, hybrid engines and other technologies will power the rest. “We’re not going to take the market by storm,” said Ghosn. “Electricity is going to complement oil.”


According to an Associated Press report, Ghosn made the remarks during a November 19thpanel discussion sponsored by the Council on Foreign Relations in New York.


Ghosn acknowledged that Toyota Motor Co. has already taken an early lead in the hybrid market. While this may be true, he believes that Nissan Motor Co. can become a leader in the all-electric vehicle market within a reasonable amount of time. Next year, Nissan is releasing the Leafelectric car in on a limited scale and plans to put the all-electric vehicle into mass-production in 2012.


Ghosn said demand from rising economies like China and India will help spur demand for electric cars.


Photo courtesy of karyodimejo2010 under the Creative Commons License.