Hiroki Isobe is Chief Engineer for Nissan’s Electric Vehicles, a post he’s held for the past two years.
This makes him the individual who has done the most to develop and bring to market the Nissan Leaf — the world’s best-selling electric car.
It’s a five-door hatchback which has an official range of 243km on a full battery charge. The car has won numerous awards, including the 2010 Green Car Vision, the 2011 European Car of the Year, the 2011 World Car of the year.
As of March 2019, over 400,000 Leafs have been sold, with the US operating as the biggest market. The European market is led by Norway, a reflection of the country’s readiness for electric vehicles, given 99% of the country’s electricity is drawn from hydropower.
Alongside the 2017 release, Isobe talked up the engineering benefits of the new model, which came autonomous driving features and specialised parking technology, Isobe said:
“Drivers of the new Nissan LEAF will quickly come to love the e-Pedal, as it makes the usual experience of urban driving far smoother and more fluid, and less demanding,” in reference to an engineering addition that allows drivers to accelerate and brake by pressing or releasing the same pedal. “Our testing has showed that drivers quickly find the e-Pedal intuitive and even enjoyable. It promotes anticipation on the road, which in turn has a positive effect on driving pleasure.”
The market as a whole may be going green. Daimler, the huge company that owns Mercedes, has announced that it will not be developing any more internal combustion engines which run on petrol and diesel, and will instead throw its R&D budget at electric engines.Tags: Electric vehicle, japan, Nissan