Wrapping up a 24-city promotional tour for its first battery-electric vehicle, Nissan has announced it is ready to begin taking orders for the 2011 Leaf sedan.
Interested customers will be able to place a refundable $100 reservation fee, starting in April, for the lithium-ion-powered Leaf, which will be one of the first in a new generation of battery-electric vehicles, or BEVs, expected to reach market over the next several years. The deposit will put registrants at the head of the line when the formal ordering process begins in August. Nissan plans a phased rollout of the 2011 Leaf, starting in select markets, in December 2010.
The automaker says it will make the BEV available for either lease or sale, but in a surprise move, it has reversed course on what was seen as a creative, if untraditional, pricing strategy. The maker had considered the idea of setting one price for the Leaf itself, then another for the battery, which would have only been available as a lease.