11 Comments

Summary:

Nissan says it collected 6,635 reservations for its upcoming LEAF electric sedan in just one day — far more than companies like Tesla, Aptera and Ford have raked in during early reservation periods for some of their models.

Model (Type) Reservations Deposit Amount (Price) Launch
Nissan LEAF (BEV) 6,635 in first 2.5 days, 2,700 in first 3 hours (April 2010) $99 ($32,780 standard, $33,720 premium) December 2010
Aptera 2e (BEV) and 2h (HEV) 4,000+ as of March 2009; 3,100 as of March 2010 $500 fully refundable or $750 locked in ($25K-$45K) Minimum 11 months after raising new funds; mid-2011 at the earliest
Ford Fiesta (ICE) 1,000+ in first 6 days (December 2009) $0 ($13K) Summer 2010
Tesla Model S (BEV) 520 in first week (April 2009), 2,000 as of December 2009 $5K for standard version, $40K for Signature Edition ($57,400) Early 2012

Talk about pent up demand — Nissan says it collected 6,635 reservations for its upcoming LEAF electric sedan in less than three days just one day, including as many as 2,700 in the first three hours that the automaker started accepting refundable deposits for the vehicle.

Taken in context with the reservation stats for models like Tesla Motors’ high-end Model S, Aptera’s planned three-wheelers and Ford’s subcompact Fiesta, Nissan’s latest numbers suggest a few things: Nissan has struck an effective tone and reached the right audience with its marketing (including a big push during the Olympics), and set the deposit low enough ($99) for a good chunk of the 115,000 subscribers to the LEAF “interest list” to follow through with a reservation.

The influx of reservations seems to work well for electric vehicles in the consumer market — at least models that have firm, not-too-distant launch dates and a track record of delivering on promises, and which carry relatively moderate price tags.

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  1. I think you have the story exactly backwards-

    520 people plunking down 5 grand for a Tesla, from a company that’s barely solvent (if not actually a ponzi scheme), and the fact the 3100 people STILL have $500 riding on an Aptera, a vehicle they will never, ever see, is the big news!

    6000 folks giving a fully refundable hundred bucks to an actual, real, function car company is not news at all…

    1. Josie Garthwaite Rockfish Friday, April 23, 2010

      Touché

  2. I would have put money down on an Aptera, but as of now, they currently will only take orders from California residents. I bet their reservations numbers would be quite a bit higher if they allowed the other 50 states to order. (or at least those states that have an interest in BEVs)

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  5. How does a gasoline powered Ford compete with an electric battery car?? Are you saying there is no pent up demand for gasoline vehicles??

  6. Nice chart, but that 6,635 reservations was in the first 2.5 days (they announced it on Friday; reservations opened on Tuesday). In any case, yes, there is a lot of pent-up demand for a reasonably priced electric car.

    I don’t know why anyone would get excited about the Ford Fiesta.

    1. Josie Garthwaite Grant Monday, April 26, 2010

      Ah, thank you for pointing out my oversight. I’ve updated with the correct info.

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