Nissan’s tuning arm, Nismo, has already built a full-on race car version of the Nissan Leaf
, and has even used it to run demonstration laps
prior to the 2011 24 Hours of Le Mans.
It was only a matter of time before Nismo turned its attention to the road going version of the Leaf, and Nissan has chosen the 2011 Tokyo Motor Show for the reveal of its new Leaf Nismo Concept.
Like the previously announced Juke Nismo
, the Leaf Nismo sports a full bodykit, including a revised front end, side skirts and a more aerodynamic rear. A handling package, complete with 18-inch alloy wheels, ensures that the Leaf Nismo will be competent when the road throws you a curve or two.
The Leaf Nismo will be faster than an ordinary Leaf, too. As Andy Palmer, Nissan’s
executive vice president for planning, told Auto Express
. “The Leaf Nismo will have around 10 percent more power than the standard car," he said. "It will also have a weight reduction, too, as this will bring benefits to handling and range”.
Ten percent more power should give the Leaf Nismo the equivalent of 121 horsepower, and it will surely boost the stock Leaf’s 210 pound-feet of torque as well. We’re not sure how much lighter Nismo can make the Leaf, but every little bit will boost performance and, potentially, range.
We say “potentially” since a Leaf driven in a sporting manner won’t return maximum range, no matter how light it is. Still, we see the Leaf Nismo as a necessary step in the right direction; electric cars aren’t going away anytime soon, so it’s about time a factory tuner got to work on producing a version for enthusiasts.
Afraid you’ve missed breaking news from Tokyo? You’ll find our complete coverage of this year’s Tokyo Motor Show here