Nissan sees electric car sales surging to 1 million annually by 2022

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Nissan Motor Co announced plans to sell 1 million electric vehicles (EVs) annually by 2022 and said it would focus its lower-emissions lineup on all-battery and gasoline-hybrid EVs rather than costlier technologies including plug-in hybrids.

Nissan and its automaking partners, France's Renault SA and Mitsubishi Motors Corp, together plan to launch 12 electric models as part of their strategy to achieve annual vehicle sales totalling 14 million units by 2022, compared with 10.6 million units in 2017.

"Our strong China offensive will start this year, led by a Nissan EV in the C-segment, deriving from the Leaf technology, with a body type adapted to the Chinese customers' taste", Nissan chief planning officer Philippe Klein told reporters in Tokyo.

Under the plan, electrified cars are to account for 30 percent of all sales in 2022, and by 2025, all Infiniti models are to be electrified, the automaker said earlier. By 2025, INFINITI expects electrified vehicles to comprise 50% of its global sales.

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As is the case with other automakers, Nissan's embrace of electrification involves more than just purely electric vehicles.

Nissan Europe design boss Mamoru Aoki described the production auto it inspires as "a breakthrough model" that will crack the mainstream - a key achievement for the brand to reach its new targets.

Reach 100 per cent connectivity for all of the company's brands which are Nissan, Infiniti and Datsun cars in some of the key markets. That will use an even smaller, A-segment SUV platform.

Aside for EVs, Nissan plans to invest heavily in the development of autonomous systems, with 20 models from an equal number of markets being targeted to feature ProPilot technologies over the next four years. And further two EV derivatives are also being prepared for the Venucia brand.

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The company is already offering its Nissan Note and Nissan Serena with the e-Power hybrid technology.

Nissan and mobile gaming operator DeNA Co earlier this month held public field tests of their Easy Ride self-driving taxi service in Yokohama.

Klein declined to comment on the accident, but said that the automaker requires two engineers to be present in the vehicle during self-driving tests on roads - one behind the wheel who can override the automated system at any time as necessary, and another in the back seat to monitor the system. They plan to offer the service beginning in Japan in the early 2020s.

Some fear a setback for the technology after a pedestrian was killed Sunday night in a crash involving a self-driving Uber SUV in the US, the first death involving a full autonomous test vehicle.

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