Nissan unveils $29 billion electric vehicle plan, new concept vehicles

Nissan's new concept cars
The company is also targeting a big breakthrough in battery technologies. Photo credit: Supplied / Nissan

Nissan has announced a NZ$29 billion plan to accelerate its production and sale of more electric vehicles (EVs).

As part of the Japanese car manufacturer's newly unveiled 'Ambition 2030' plan, the company will introduce 23 new electrified models, including 15 new EVs by 2030.

A lot of that work appears front-ended, with 20 new e-Power and EV models planned for the next five years. Those will be used to help Nissan target a huge boost in sales of EVs across the world, including a 75 percent increase in Europe alone.

"We are proud of our long track record of innovation, and of our role in delivering the EV revolution," Nissan COO Ashwani Gupta said.

"With our new ambition, we continue to take the lead in accelerating the natural shift to EVs by creating customer pull through driving excitement, enabling adoption and creating a cleaner world."

Another part of the plan is to create better batteries, including evolving existing lithium-ion batteries and introducing cobalt-free technology to bring down the cost by 65 percent by 2028.

That's the same year Nissan is targeting the release of its proprietary 'all-solid-state batteries' (ASSB) which will allow the company to offer better performance and reduce charging time to a third of current levels, it said.

It's also hoping to reduce the price of batteries to US$75 per kWh by 2028 and then to $65 kWh, which would be around half the cost of EV batteries in 2020.

Autonomous vehicles are also part of 'Ambition 2030' with the company expanding its ProPilot driver assist technology designed for use in single-lane traffic to more than 2.5 million vehicles in the next five years.

It's also aiming to incorporate LIDAR systems on "virtually every new model" by 2030.

Nissan concept car
Photo credit: Supplied / Nissan

The company also introduced a number of concept cars to support its vision: The Chill-Out, the Hang-Out, the Surf-Out and the Max-Out.

The Max-Out is a convertible sports car designed for "superlative stability and comfort" which will have a very low centre of gravity, while the Chill-Out is designed as a small crossover type.

Nissan has previously said its next-generation Leaf would move to that style from the standard hatch model but hasn't stated whether the Chill-Out is that model.

The Surf-Out is a single cab pick-up which features a removable canopy and is designed to be "a hub for having fun with your friends".

The Hang-out is a boxier SUV that is "more than just a means of transportation; it can be used as an extension of personal space", the company said.

That model's seats swing around so four people in the car can all face each other, offering "the comfort of your living room in a mobile space".