Early adopters of electric cars reserve early.
Nissan Motors Co. said Friday that buyers have already reserved more than 20 percent of the first year’s production of its Leaf electric car in the first 3 days of taking reservations.
About 6,600 U.S. consumers have paid the $99 reservation fee and 3,700 in Japan have done the same. Nissan said it will make about 50,000 Leaf electric cars the first year. The automaker said it wants to have about 40 percent of production reserved by December, when the car goes on sale. The car will initially only be available in California, Oregon, Seattle, Arizona and east-central Tennessee when it first rolls out in December 2010. Nissan has said it will roll out nationwide in 2011.
Nissan began taking reservations on Tuesday from amongst the 115,000 pool of early registrants (Leaf “hand raisers”) who expressed interest in the Nissan Leaf electric car. The all-electric car will cost $32,780, though government subsidies will reduce the cost through a federal tax credit of $7,500.
The Nissan Leaf is one of the early mass-market electric cars to market when scheduled sale later this year. Is the Leaf electric car’s early adoption interest a harbinger of mainstream consumer demand for electric cars? I’m curious about the demand of other electric cars and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV) like the GM Volt will fare when finally released.