Nissan aims for China launch of cheap electric car in 2 years


LISBON: The Nissan-Renault alliance aims to launch a new electric car in the “booming” China market costing just $8,000 within two years, chief executive Carlos Ghosn said Tuesday.

The electric auto market as a whole is reaching takeoff thanks to cheaper batteries, government incentives to consumers and better infrastructure for charging vehicles on the go, he said at the Web Summit in Lisbon.

“What’s interesting is that China today represents more than one-third of the (global) electric car market whereas five years ago, it was absolutely absent from this market,” Ghosn told a panel on future trends in autos.

“What we are seeing in China is that what is really selling are the very low cost electric cars. This is where the market is booming,” he said, noting that Nissan’s Leaf comes at higher cost.

“Our intention is to (market) a car which you can sell at $8,000 but without (government) incentives,” the Nissan-Renault boss said, adding it would be a localised product made with Chinese engineering.

“Our objective is to be on the market within a couple of years.”

Nissan on Monday said its net profit during the April-September period fell 13.3 percent, blaming a strong yen and weak sales in Japan.

But sales in China, now the world’s biggest auto market, rose 3.8 percent to 610,000 automobiles.-AFP

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