Our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy have changed.

By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to the new Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.

Nissan's ultimate range anxiety cure: another car

2011_nissan_leaf.top.jpgThe Nissan Leaf can travel up to 100 miles on a charge but that may not always be enough. by Peter Valdes-Dapena, senior writer


NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- The Nissan Leaf electric car can go up to 100 miles on a charge, but that may not always be enough so, for Leaf owners outside the United States who are planning a trip longer than that, Nissan is considering a solution: gasoline-powered loaner cars.

The loaner car plan would allay "range anxiety" concerns among electric car buyers. That's the fear of getting stuck somewhere when an electric car's batteries run out.

Because it is common for families in the U.S. to have more than one car, the Leaf would likely be a family's second or third car, obviating the need for Nissan's loaner program in the United States, Nissan's spokesman Steve Oldham said.

While the Leaf would travel up to 100 miles in stop-and-go city driving, its range could be considerably less when driven on the highway. Using accessories like window defrosters, air conditioning or heating, can also reduce the car's driving range.

General Motors, which claims to have invented the term "range anxiety" and has applied to trademark it, touts its Chevrolet Volt as being immune to the problem.

The Volt can drive on electric power alone for about 40 miles. When driven further, a gasoline engine comes on to provide power for 300 miles or more before the car has to be either recharged or the gas tank refilled.

The Volt will go on sale late this year, at about the same time as the Leaf. GM will sell initially the Volt in more limited numbers than the Leaf. Although the Volt will cost considerably more than the Leaf to purchase, consumers will be able to lease either car for about the same rate of $350 a month.

"It validates our decision to build an electric vehicle with extended range," GM spokesman Nick Richards said of Nissan considering offering loaner cars. To top of page

Find Your Next Car
Index Last Change % Change
Dow 20,661.30 -6.71 -0.03%
Nasdaq 5,821.64 27.81 0.48%
S&P 500 2,348.45 4.43 0.19%
Treasuries 2.40 -0.04 -1.64%
Data as of 8:54pm ET
Company Price Change % Change
Bank of America Corp... 22.94 -0.08 -0.35%
Ford Motor Co 11.77 0.05 0.43%
Advanced Micro Devic... 14.10 0.28 2.03%
Nike Inc 53.92 -4.09 -7.05%
Wells Fargo & Co 55.33 -0.52 -0.93%
Data as of 4:01pm ET
Sponsors

Sections

The typical plan on the individual market would have a deductible of $4,100, an increase of 61%, according to a Kaiser Family Foundation report. More

The advertiser backlash to Google is growing. Major brands have halted ads on certain Google platforms after learning their promotional posts were appearing alongside extremist content. More

Your credit score plays a major role in your personal finances. The better the score, the better it is for your wallet. Here's how to help get it above the 800 mark. More