Promises about electric vehicles are a dime a dozen, and so far no one - not even Tesla - has managed to deliver a real daily-driving production car in volume. Nissan has so far promised to deliver its first electric vehicle by 2010, although initially it will be available only to commercial fleet customers, and now the company has revealed that mass production of the zero-emission vehicles could start by 2012.

Nissan will unveil its first electric vehicle on August 2nd, CEO Carlos Ghosn confirmed today at the company’s shareholder meeting. The car will then go on sale in limited numbers in both the U.S. and Japan in April of next year before entering mass production for global sale by 2012, Ghosn also revealed.

Production sites for the vehicle will include an unnamed plant in Japan as well as Nissan’s Smyrna facility in Tennessee where up to 100,000 units could be built annually.

Ghosn gave few details, but told the Associated Press that Nissan's zero-emission cars will come with a very reasonable price. "If it's not affordable, it's not going to work," he explained.

Nissan hasn't released any official details on the car, but piecing together claims made over the last several years, we expect it to feature a leased 35kWh battery pack to help keep initial prices down and make replacement easier. This battery will power a small electric motor driving the front wheels through a single gear, delivering approximately 367mpg equivalent, or mpg-e, as measured by the U.S. government's CAFE regulations.

For more details about the upcoming electric vehicle, including powertrains and pricing, check out our previous story by clicking here.