Renault-Nissan said sales for its EVs are up 15 percent year-to-date on the same period last year. This year has accounted for 31,700 sales from the 250,000 milestone.
The quarter-million was chalked up by Renault, which traded a 21-year-old diesel-dunger from a French engineer for a brand new Renault ZOE.
A new EV rebate from the French Government encouraged the buyer, says Renault, as the incentive offers up to €10,000 (AU$14,400) to customers specifically trading older diesel-powered vehicles for EVs.
France has shifted its stance on which cars its citizens should drive, with talk of a partial ban on diesel-powered passenger cars after decades of government legislation supporting their use.
Renault-Nissan said half of the EVs sold around the world come from their factories, with Nissan’s Leaf leading the way as the world’s best-selling EV with more than 180,000 sales in the model’s 4.5-year life to date.
“Demand for our electric vehicles continues to grow thanks to government incentives and the expanding charging infrastructure,” Renault-Nissan CEO, Carlos Ghosn said.
“The positive response of our customers is also driving demand. These vehicles enjoy some of the highest levels of satisfaction rates from our customers around the world.”
None of these models are currently offered for sale in Australia, although Australia Post is currently trialling electric Kangoo vans.
Nissan’s e-NV200 van is another Renault-Nissan EV that isn’t offered to Australian customers, but the Leaf has been available in Australia for several years.
However, Nissan won’t be looking to Australian customers anytime soon to boost its Leaf sales figures, with just 12 sold last month.
While that number matches May 2014, overall Leaf sales are down 10 percent on the same time last year.
Nissan has previously pointed the finger at a lack of government incentives in Australia to entice would-be buyers away from their internal combustion engines, along with a lack of charging infrastructure.
Price is undoubtedly another factor in the slow uptake of EVs in Australia. Whereas the Nissan Leaf is priced from $39,990 drive-away in Australia until the end of June (albeit for 2012-plated stock), the Renault ZOE can be leased in France for as little as €99 (AU$143) a month.
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