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Nissan intends to take electric car leadership role in China in coming years

Nissan-Renault CEO Carlos Ghosn says the key to Nissan’s electric car leadership will be localizing Leaf manufacturing near where the cars are sold, and cost reduction. Another target in Ghosns’ mind is China’s emerging electric car market. The statements came during a gathering of Nissan Leaf owners on Tuesday at Kansai University near Osaka Japan.

Recently Ghosn said that China will lead the world in electric vehicle adoption, if only because the government is pushing hard towards the goal of being the world leader in clean energy technology. He made it clear Nissan intends take a strong position in China, saying “China is certainly in the leadership in terms of the support for electric cars. And, certainly, in terms of policies to support the development of zero-emission cars, they are at the top level. I don’t see there is any other emerging market that approaches what China is doing.”
Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn says localization and lower costs will be key to Nissan’s leadership in China’s emerging electric car market.
An EV Degree

A large part of Nissan’s strategy for electric vehicle leadership is what Ghosn calls “localization.” By this he means to move production of the Leaf to the same continent where it is sold. This has several positive benefits, the largest of which is related to the exchange rate. During his remarks Ghosn pointed out that when they started development of the Leaf, in 2006-7, the yen-to-dollar ratio was 110 yen to the dollar, and by 2010 it had fallen to 80 yen to the dollar. That meant Nissan had to absorb a lot of cost solely because of the exchange rate.


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