|Big News about Nissan LEAF|
|Department of Energy Announces Closing of Loan Agreement to Bring
Production of Nissan LEAF, Battery to North America
Today, Secretary of Energy Steven Chu announced that the Department of
Energy has closed a $1.4 billion loan agreement with Nissan North America,
Inc. The loan will support the modification of Nissan's Smyrna, Tenn.,
manufacturing plant to produce the Nissan LEAF, a zero-emission,
all-electric vehicle, and the lithium-ion battery packs to power them.
The loan, which originated through the Department's loan guarantee program
office, was issued as part of the Advanced Technology Vehicles
Manufacturing Loan Program, a $25 billion program authorized by Congress
as part of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007. The program
is designed to accelerate the development of vehicles and technologies
that increase U.S. energy independence, create cleaner means of
transportation and stimulate the American economy. The loan was finalized
after a rigorous financial and technical qualification process.
"Nissan applauds the Department of Energy's support of the development of
innovative, advanced vehicle technologies and the creation of clean energy
jobs," said Scott Becker, senior vice president, Administration and
Finance, Nissan North America. "Nissan is committed to zero-emission
mobility. This loan, which will bring production of the Nissan LEAF to
Tennessee, is a significant step in sustaining American jobs and American
The loan will result in the creation of up to 1,300 jobs when the plants
are operating at full capacity. Modification of the Smyrna manufacturing
plant, which will begin later this year, includes a new battery plant and
changes in the existing structure for electric-vehicle assembly. When
fully operational, the vehicle assembly plant will have the capacity to
build 150,000 Nissan LEAF electric cars per year, and the new plant will
have an annual capacity of 200,000 batteries.
Nissan, along with its Alliance partner, Renault, is the only automaker
committed to mass marketing all-electric vehicles on a global scale.
Nissan LEAF, a five-passenger sedan, will be available for private and
fleet customers. It is being launched in the U.S., Japan and Europe in
December 2010. Nissan has spearheaded a holistic approach to zero-emission
mobility by working with states, municipalities, utility companies and
other partners, to prepare markets and infrastructure. Nissan has formed
more than a dozen partnerships in the United States, in markets including
State of Tennessee, the State of Oregon, Sonoma County and San Diego in
California, Phoenix and Tucson, Ariz., Washington D.C., Seattle, Raleigh,
N.C., and with Houston-based Reliant Energy.
In North America, Nissan's operations include automotive design,
engineering, consumer and corporate financing, sales and marketing,
distribution and manufacturing. 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