A new world record has been set by the Electric Vehicle Union (EVU) and Norwegian EV Association in Norway as 260-and-a-half electric vehicles, thanks to Nissan’s Half LEAF, were united to drive in unison outside of Norway’s capital city, Oslo.
Starting from Maridalen in outer Oslo, the world’s cleanest and quietest automotive gathering of all time followed a pre-determined 4km route and was monitored by two-camera carrying drones to ensure that all vehicles were moving simultaneously and qualified for the new world record. The previous record, which was set with just Nissan LEAF vehicles at the Silverstone circuit in the UK in 2012, was beaten by 35-and-a-half EVs.
Although open to owners of all EVs, a large proportion of the cavalcade was represented by the Nissan LEAF with a total number of 128-and-a-half LEAFs registered for the record attempt. Nissan’s LEAF zero-emission vehicle is one of the best selling cars in Norway with 2,298 cars being sold there in 2012.
“Although it was a fun event, it had a serious side,” said Jean-Pierre Diernaz, Director of Electric Vehicles at Nissan Europe. “Its aim was to show that EVs are thoroughly practical everyday cars with the added benefit of producing no tailpipe emissions and very little noise. We had a customer from Hundeidvik, which is over 500km from Oslo, registered to take part using the quick charger network to get there. Norway is ahead of all other European electric vehicle markets, but many other governments and councils are watching closely and sales are increasing across the region.”
Nissan celebrated the momentous record breaking occasion by handing over the keys to the initial allocation of Nissan LEAFs purchased by the Oslo municipality, the first of 1000 EVs the municipality will acquire over the next three years.
In addition to this, Nissan’s Pop-up Café gave participants and spectators the chance to learn more about EVs and the future of zero emission mobility. At the Pop-up Café, the car manufacturer also unveiled its next challenge – to reach one billion electric km by 1st January 2015 – as the company aims to encourage more consumers to join the EV revolution. Kilometres covered by existing Nissan LEAF owners and from test drives all count towards the one billion goal.
The company also established a Test Drive Hub where existing and potential new owners could see for themselves the new, second-generation LEAF, which is now built in Europe and incorporates more than 100 significant changes and improvements.
Zero-emission EVs are hugely popular in Norway where, in 2012, they accounted for 2.9 per cent of the country’s total new car market. Owners are exempt from sales tax and enjoy free city centre parking and can even drive in bus lanes without penalty.