November 14, 2011

Japan in the Driver’s Seat

November 14 - Honolulu - Two senior Japanese officials took their turns at the Nissan LEAF wheel Sunday at the APEC 2011 meeting in Hawaii.

Akihisa Nagashima, Special Adviser to Japanese Prime Minister Noda, and Hiroyuki Nagahama, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary, received a brief explanation on the electric vehicle's operations before taking the zero-emission vehicles for a spin on the streets of Honolulu.

Nagashima, also a parliamentarian from western Tokyo, and Nagahama, a frequent government spokesman, talked about the importance of EVs and their place on the APEC agenda.

Nagashima on his reaction to the Nissan LEAF driving experience:

"It's quiet, there's no sound inside, it's only the air conditioner. If I switch off the air con, I can hear the birds singing and the fountain. I feel like I'm driving in the jungle and harmonizing with nature. It's a very comfortable feeling, like I'm one with nature."

"The expansion of electric vehicles throughout the world could contribute directly to addressing the environmental problem. This vehicle does not emit any CO2. That was a great experience, and I truly feel this is a big step forward in the right direction."

Nagahama on the future of EVs:

"In this APEC discussion, the environmental issue is one of the main agenda items. Zero-emission vehicles should be one of the directions towards helping the environment."