Production Of 2018 Nissan LEAF To Begin In US & UK By The End Of 2017 – video

1 week ago by Mark Kane 43

The new 2018 Nissan LEAF, as it predecessor, will be manufactured on three continents. Production in Oppama, Japan has already begun (see video above), as the first deliveries in the company’s domestic market are scheduled to begin on October 2.

2018 Nissan LEAF

The two other sites are preparing to begin production now, be in full swing by December, and then start deliveries in January 2018.

  • Nissan’s Vehicle Assembly Plant in Smyrna, Tennessee
  • Nissan Motor Manufacturing (UK) Ltd. in Sunderland, U.K.

According to various unconfirmed sources, the US plant’s production is a little further ahead, and some deliveries may yet arrive in the US before year’s end.

Nissan expects that the new LEAF will sell at least twice better than previous generation (or even triple). Which given the company is tracking to sell just over 50,000 copies of the older model this year (as it did in 2016), should translate to at least 100,000 sales in 2018 (and hopefully 150,000).

The 100,000 sales of 40 kWh packs found inside the new LEAFs places Nissan at 4 GWh worth of battery demand annually just for the LEAF.  (Nissan also plans on producing an all-electric SUV and sedan in the next two years, with the SUV reported to debut next month in Tokyo, Japan).

There is also the e-NV200 model to consider; that model didn’t catch on the 30 kWh battery upgrade from a couple year’s ago and still uses old 24 kWh, but we imagine it shouldn’t be too long until Nissan announces it is moving to the new 40 kWh pack as well.

A 2018 Nissan LEAF rolls off the line in Japan

Fumiaki Matsumoto, executive vice president of Nissan Motor Co., Ltd., Manufacturing, Supply Chain Management said:

“We’re proud to continue manufacturing the Nissan LEAF at three plants globally. The Nissan LEAF is the icon of Nissan Intelligent Mobility with its many advanced technologies. Nissan employees in Oppama, Smyrna and Sunderland are excited to continue producing the most popular electric vehicle in the world.”

Lithium-ion batteries for the LEAF will continue to be produced in Smyrna, Sunderland and Zama, Japan – although not by Nissan directly anymore, as the company recently sold off that business to GSR capital.

And while we have no confirmation of this, we assume that Nissan has a contract in place with GSR to produce and supply the 40 kWh packs for this new LEAF, while the 60 kWh packs (to arrive in late 2018 inside the longer range/200+ mile 2019 MY LEAF) will be supplied by LG Chem (and possible also by GSR concurrently).

Production of new 2018 Nissan LEAF to begin in US and UK

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43 responses to "Production Of 2018 Nissan LEAF To Begin In US & UK By The End Of 2017 – video"

  1. Tom says:

    I mentioned multiple times in all the rumor threads that there was zero actual evidence that Nissan would switch battery suppliers. They were simply unbuckling their ownership to free the battery company up. A major piece of that being Chinese ownership which gives preferential treatment to Chinese owned companies and will help Nissan penetrate deeper into that market.

    1. georgeS says:

      “I mentioned multiple times in all the rumor threads that there was zero actual evidence that Nissan would switch battery suppliers. ”

      -Tom

      If I remember Jay’s articles the evidence is circumstantial. It seemed logical when he wrote them but now the delay in any announcement of a new supplier makes me suspect.

      It could be that the 60 kwh battery will still be the old uncooled configuration of all the past batteries made by this new Chinese company.

      Not good IMO if true. I’d like to see a liquid cooled LG chem battery in the 60 kwh version of the Leaf.

      1. Tom says:

        This article points out that the batteries (yes 40 but still) are build in country. That’s how the China situation will roll. Chinese battery production. You have to team up with a Chinese company.

  2. MTN Ranger says:

    The double or triple was specifically for the Japanese market when I listened to the presentation. No mention of other markets. I doubt US sales will be more than 50% higher than current numbers.

    1. Tom says:

      We’ll see I guess. Certainly Japan is a big chunk of their sales. My OPINION in the US is that this vehicle looks better and IS better than the old one so it should go up. I’d also argue it is less polarizing looking than the Bolt and is the same basic configuration of a hatchback and appears to have a much nicer interior. It appears to be about $7500 cheaper too which is a big deal. I know everybody here goes on and on about range but my opinion is that 150 will be ok for a bunch of people.

      So if we are looking like 2500 sales per month of Bolt which seems to be what the trend looks like, then I’d say there’s no reason Leaf couldn’t do that or better. So a doubling could be possible.

      I think also Nissan now has positioned itself to have a couple more quarters of federal incentive than GM.

      Hey when are we re-estimating this anyway?

      http://insideevs.com/us-federal-7500-ev-credit-expiry-date-by-automaker-estimates/

      1. Tech01x says:

        Nissan has been putting a lot of money on the hood to move the 2017 Leafs. Deals have been dramatic in order to achieve the roughly 60,000/year global sales. It isn’t clear right now how well the 2018 Leaf would do at near normal pricing.

      2. EVShopper says:

        Based on current sales trends in the US, I would guess that Nissan is looking at hitting 200,000 for the US market sometime in 2020. The previous estimate on inside EVs was based on selling 5,000/mo. And they have been way under that (less than half). They currently have about 90,000 to go before hitting 200,000. I doubt Leaf 2.0 will sell 5,000/mo in the US. if we assume 3,000/mo (I think even this is optimistic) then you are looking at about 30months.

        1. Mint says:

          Nissan is selling at a pace of ~15k/yr in the US for the last 2.5 years, so doubling that would be ~2500/mo.

          I think that’s pretty reasonable. Relative to the new Leaf, the previous one is a joke.

          ProPilot is a big selling point, IMO, as it makes this the ultimate commuter car.

      3. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

        “I know everybody here goes on and on about range but my opinion is that 150 will be ok for a bunch of people.”

        Yes. Before LG Chem started advertising a “200 mile battery”**, all of us EV advocates wished more auto makers would put 100+ mile BEVs into production… and then suddenly nothing less than 200 miles would do!

        Of course, there’s a reason all gasmobiles have a range on a tank of gas of at least 300 miles, so a 150 mile BEV will be a niche market. But it could be a reasonably sizable niche!

        “I think also Nissan now has positioned itself to have a couple more quarters of federal incentive than GM.

        “Hey when are we re-estimating this anyway?”

        Jay Cole frequently talks of expecting Congress to revisit the subject, and extend the subsidies when they start to run out for Tesla and GM.

        But we haven’t heard a peep on the subject from Washington, which I think we all know seems to be preoccupied with much weightier matters. So I’m not holding my breath!

        **…which never made any sense, because how far the battery pack will propel the car depends entirely on pack size and capacity, which is a decision by the auto maker, not the battery maker.

        1. Ron says:

          For many people a 150 mile range ICE would be more hassle than a 150 mile BEV. Charging every night at home for the commuter is much less hassle than stopping at the Esso station every day.

          1. Will says:

            Just market it to seniors and millenierials and ev enthusiasts

            1. Will says:

              Was at the dealer testing the Bolt here in Cleveland where I had to wait 40min because some seniors were testing it.

              1. William says:

                Still worth the wait, my Test Drive in the Bolt was a lot of fun. The current Leaf acceleration is adequate, but the Bolt is a lot of peppy performance fun!

          2. Tom says:

            Good point.

        2. Asak says:

          With a Republican Congress do you really think the credits will be extended? It shouldn’t be a partisan issue, but sadly I think it’s naive to believe it isn’t. The Republican party is too much in the pocket of big oil.

          I really don’t think the credits get extended unless Democrats win back Congress in 2018. The optics of “American companies” losing the credits will be bad, but I don’t think it’s enough to overcome the general hostility to electric cars among Republican politicians.

          1. Sean says:

            You just have to sell it to Trump in the right way and e will do it himself!

            “So more electric cars means more electricity will be used, the more electricity used will mean more coal gets burned, which means more coal will be mined and more coal miners will have jobs. If you promote electric cars, you will directly be saving coal jobs.”

            And I bet immediately you would have incentives for EVs from the man himself.

    2. Samwise says:

      On paper this car should really sell extremely well!
      This car is sitting right in the middle of whopping great hole in the EV market at a price similar to the cars below the hole and significantly less than the cars above the hole.
      But the US is a funny car market with strange quirks that really make no sense to those of us watching from the outside so who knows.
      Certainly it is absolutely garaunteed to sell in very good numbers in Europe and Japan (basically as fast as they can build it I imagine).

      1. 150 Miles = 241.4 Kms.
        I have had what should have been Fuel Efficient Cars, barely hit 275 Kms before needing Gas!

        If you can charge each night at Home, this range could satisfy a lot of users! Even More for those who can charge at Home AND Work!

        If Nissan would add some effort on DC QC’s installed in Triplets and Quads, at 50-80 Mile Inter-City intervals, they could get evem more users interested in these!

    3. ffbj says:

      Yeah, I think that is tall order.

  3. suresh says:

    would it be made at one of the factories in US where they screwed over workers right to form a union?

    1. Vik says:

      Yes, Nissan’s Smyrna, TN plant had an unionization election last month which resulted in a 60 – 40 lose for the Union. The election was rife with Wagner Act violations, Management supposedly had “sessions” with workers to address their concerns which turned out to be scare tactics, and of course Tennessee Politicians jumped in. If it makes any difference, all of Nissan’s plants except the 2 American plants are Unionized.

      1. Will says:

        If workers want to unionized so let it be if they don’t let be as well. It’s thier lose

        1. Vik says:

          The issue is even if they want to Unionize they are being threatened by people who have “authority”. Is it really that hard to ask for a scenario in which people can decide without tons of outside voices, and money on both sides.

          1. suresh says:

            nissan leaf lost me on this. i have to get more info on how tesla is treating their employees. bolt is not looking bad if not for that stupid slow charge capability.

        2. ffbj says:

          loss, not lose. It’s their loss.

          1. Will says:

            Thanks grammar police

            1. SJC says:

              It is relevant to learn how to use the English language.

  4. JackDFW says:

    How soon will Nissan hit the phase out of the $7500 federal tax credit??

    Before or after GM and Tesla?

      1. EVShopper says:

        Very far after.

        1. Jay Cole says:

          Right now it looks like Q1 2019 would be the 200,000th Nissan plug-in sale for the US, so the $7,500 credit would get knocked down to $3,750 on July 1st/October 1st, 2019.

          Nissan is a fairly tricky one to call right now, because who really knows how this LEAF will sell, then you have the ~220 miler next Fall, and also an all-electric SUV/sedan (both promised by 2019 in the US). I would say it is tempting to look at the results so far this year with the first gen LEAF, and not include the new/upcoming offerings (because we haven’t physically seen them yet), and estimate a later date…but that is likely a mistake.

          1. MTN Ranger says:

            If the supposed 60kWh pack 2019 version is available mid-2018, who will buy the 40kWh 2018? Rumors of it being close to the same price as the 2018 would keep a lot of people waiting for it instead.

            1. Jay Cole says:

              It won’t be mid-2018 for the 60 kWh – near guaranteed. It’s gonna be best case late Fall 2018..

              With the 2018/40 kWh LEAF in retail production this December, I think your best case is ~October 2018.

              Nissan has been careful to not mis-speak/handcuff itself here, they state that will be out later in “fiscal 2018” – which in Japan ends March 31st, 2019.

              With that said, no one is saying we aren’t going to see the ~60 kWh pack appear in something else with a Nissan badge before.

              1. William says:

                Interesting that the larger pack won’t make it into dealerships, until late next calendar year. I guess the rumor mill was a bit optimistic last month before the new Leaf 40 kWh announcement/ release date confirmation.

            2. SJC says:

              Fading packs means death spiral.

  5. alain says:

    the leaf looks so much better than the bolt!
    the bolts would be selling like hot cake s
    if it wasn t for the way the car looks.
    doesn t mather how great a car is ,if look s
    so bad ,it won t sell much!people how pay 30 grand or more for car have to love it

    1. EVShopper says:

      Bolt is designed like a true EV with a cab forward design and no huge unnecessary hood. LEAF is designed to look more like a traditional ICE.

    2. Derek says:

      I think the Leaf and Bolt both are OK in the styling department. A big difference to the American buyer IMO is the that the Leaf is a bigger car, a full 12″ longer with similar width and height. It is Civic/Corolla sized but higher. The Bolt is Fit sized. IMO this is a big deal to many buyers.

      1. John C says:

        Huh?

        I saw a Bolt side by side with my LEAF and it looked bigger.

        Am I on drugs or something?

        1. William says:

          No, it is like looking at the full moon just sitting on the horizon, instead of looking at it straight overhead. A Bolt hits your eye, and it looks a like a “big pizza pie”, that’s Amore!

        2. Derek says:

          Bolt 164″ Gen2 Leaf 176″

  6. Will says:

    If the 60kw comes out next year then I see a price cut for row at around 27k while the 60kw E+ sells at 32k for the base model. It’s about sales and afforablity for Nissan. Thier not the 4th largest auto maker in the world for nothing

  7. John Ray says:

    Great video. Kudos to Nissan for not holding back now that the car is actually in production. Too bad other EV manufacturers can’t be more open and honest.

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