January 22, 2011 - Nissan LEAF first became available to consumers in December of 2011, in California, Washington, Oregon, Arizona and Tennessee. These areas are home to The EV Project - the largest electric vehicle and infrastructure deployment ever undertaken. The EV Project is a result of a partnership with charging infrastructure provider ECOtality and partially funded by a grant from the U.S. Dept. of Energy. Customers in these first five launch states, who represent more than 55 percent of total Nissan LEAF reservations, will be able to place firm orders for the Nissan LEAF starting in August. Nissan LEAF will be introduced to Texas and Hawaii shortly thereafter, in January 2011; North Carolina, Florida, Georgia, Washington DC, Virginia, Maryland, South Carolina and Alabama follow in April 2011; and be rolled-out to the balance of the nation beginning in Fall 2011 with availability in all markets nationwide by the end of that year. "We are pleased to see so many people making a choice for a zero-emission future by placing reservations for the Nissan LEAF," said Brian Carolin, senior vice president, Sales and Marketing, Nissan North America. "Consumer feedback and market readiness have been key drivers in developing our phased rollout. Nissan is able to target areas of customer demand for early launch, while continuing to work in future markets to ensure the continued success of electric vehicles." Nissan North America also is informing its consumers that the lithium-ion battery pack that powers the Nissan LEAF will carry a warranty of 8 years or 100,000 miles - matching U.S. market competitive conditions. 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. More information on the Nissan LEAF and zero emissions can be found at www.nissanusa.com. Nissan Zero Emission Website http://www.nissan-zeroemission.com
For the 2011 model year, which began arriving at dealers in late September, there are no significant changes to the Toyota Prius. This third edition of the Toyota Prius is bigger and more powerful than the model it replaced. The four-cylinder engine grew in displacement from 1.5 liters to 1.8 liters and, combined with a 36Kw electric motor, boosts horsepower from 110 to 134. The result is a reduction in zero-to-60 time by a full second. The body is about four inches longer and about an inch wider. Despite the added power and size, the 2011 Toyota Prius is the only vehicle available today to offer 50 miles per gallon in combined city/highway driving. Toyota achieved this level of fuel efficiency by keeping the vehicle’s weight down, maintaining the best aerodynamics of any production vehicle in the world, and re-engineering the power train to extend the range of all-electric gas-free driving. Clever high-efficiency tricks include an electric water pump, exhaust gas recovery and an optimized regenerative brake system. Under body covers with splitters aids the aerodynamic efficiency.