European Investment Bank to Boost Nissan Leaf Production

The Nissan plant at Sunderland in the UK has received £189m in funding from the European Investment bank to boost the production of the Nissan Leaf electric car as well as that of electric car batteries.

The investment will provide funds for the integration of tooling and new machinery for the manufacture of the 100% electric vehicle.

The Nissan Leaf will go into full production two years from now in 2013.

A spokesperson for Nissan, Trevor Mann, said he was “extremely grateful” and “very excited” about the support.

The EIB funding will also aid the production of electric car batteries, which will start at the plant at the beginning of next year.

The total cost of the Leaf project was in the region of £420 million.  Nissan says it will provide work for about 2,250 people, both at the plant and across the supply chain in the rest of the UK.

The company’s Senior Vice-president for Manufacturing said “The Nissan Leaf has already made history as the world's first affordable, mass-market, pure-electric vehicle and we are all very excited about battery and Leaf production beginning at Sunderland for our European market.”

He added that Nissan truly appreciated the support from the EIB, which clearly showed that the bank shared the company’s vision of a future with zero-emission transport.

The Leaf has a range of 160km and compared to a conventional petrol-driven family car it cuts carbon emissions by up to 40% – perhaps something to take into account when you are ready to apply for your next car loan.

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