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New Zealand: Green market heats up as Leaf drops

Nissan’s all-electric, highly awarded Leaf will go on sale in New Zealand in July. The five-door hatch will sell for $69,700 and the first buyer, Sovereign – New Zealand’s largest life insurer – got in early and has already taken delivery of the Leaf.

Nissan New Zealand managing director John Manley believes that the pricing of the little hatch will put the company ahead in the fast-developing zero-emissions segment.

Manley says that while the vehicle is a world first and full of innovation, it has also been designed for practical requirements.

“Unlike other electric vehicles, the Nissan Leaf is, to all intents, like any other five door, mid-range sedan.”

Sovereign plans to use the Leaf as a company pool car, and Mercury Energy has developed a special energy package to ensure that Sovereign’s commitment to sustainability translates into real savings.

A purpose-built charging station has been installed at Sovereign’s head office at Smales Farm, Takapuna.

The Leaf is regarded as the world’s first mass-produced, fully electric, zero emission vehicle and is the culmination of decades of investment and research by Nissan.

“The world is changing like never before,” Sovereign chief executive Charles Anderson says. “Sovereign takes the consumption of resources and our impact on the environment seriously and we are pleased to be able to demonstrate our leadership in this area.”

“We believe the Leaf and the evolution to fully electric vehicles that maximise the use of New Zealand’s renewable energy sources is an important step in technology innovation, and are proud to be the first to purchase this ground-breaking vehicle.

“We are redefining our business practices to ensure we make the most positive impact we can on our environment and community.”

Manley says: “In addition to its full functionality, the Leaf boasts a superior recycle rate.
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