Franklin, Tennessee – Hawaii has been selected as an initial launch market for the all-electric Nissan Leaf when it goes on sale in the U.S. in early 2011.

Nissan and the state of Hawaii are working towards a partnership to promote the development of an electric vehicle network. As part of the collaboration, Nissan has committed to making the Leaf available to Hawaiian customers.

“We appreciate Nissan’s recognition of Hawaii as a global model for electric vehicles and a leader in clean energy,” said governor Linda Lingle. “The introduction of the Nissan Leaf electric vehicle will build on Hawaii’s progress to end our state’s over-reliance on imported fossil fuels and increase our energy security.”

In the U.S., the Leaf will start at US$32,780, with a monthly lease price of $349. Customers will be eligible for a federal tax credit of $7,500. Nissan estimates that while an average vehicle has a fuel cost of 14 cents per mile, the Leaf will costs about five cents per mile, depending on fuel and electricity costs.

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