Nissan plans to test a handful of new electric vehicles in Washington, the company announced at the Washington Auto Show on Wednesday.
Through a partnership with FedEx Express, an express-delivery subsidiary of FedEx, Nissan will field test its new e-NV200, a fully electric compact cargo vehicle in the District. This is the first time the car will be deployed in North America—the two companies have run similar tests in Japan, Brazil and the United Kingdom. Tests will help Nissan assess the viability of the car before it begins mass production in Europe later this year.
Nissan and FedEx could begin putting an e-NV200 into rotation starting in March, and could test more over about a year, according to Nissan.
FedEx sought a trial in DC to test the car’s performance under East Coast traffic patterns and geography, according to the company. FedEx Express currently runs 167 electric vehicles and 365 hybrid electric vehicles worldwide.
The e-NV200 will be the second electric vehicle Nissan sells, after the Nissan Leaf, and it runs on the same lithium ion battery as the Leaf. The new model can be charged up to 80 percent capacity in less than 30 minutes, according to Nissan.