Nissan is considering its options regarding how it will expand its range of pure electric vehicles, with a Ford Fiesta sized model set to join the Nissan Leaf, according to a senior source within the company.
The car manufacturer has sold over 200,000 models of the Lead since it was first launched in 2010 and it is already planning a successor to that model, which will stay close to its five door family hatchback layout.
The recent appearance of a working prototype of the Bladeglider sports car has resulted in speculation that the next step in Nissanâs publicly stated goal to spread pure electric technology throughout its line-up could be a niche model for driving enthusiasts.
However, the man in charge of Nissanâs EV programme in Europe, Gareth Dunsmore, has now said that a sports car is not a priority for the brand.
Instead, he gave the strongest indication so far on what is likely to get the green light, commenting: Weâve invested $5.4bn (£4.1bn) in electric cars such as the Leaf, so we need to ensure weâre satisfying as many types of customer as possible. In Europe, that could mean looking towards B-segment hatches [Ford Fiesta size] and SUVs or crossovers.
Dunsmore added: The first people who bought EVs were the proud early adopters. The second people were the fleets. And the third people were families, who wanted affordability and practicality. The Leaf is well placed to deliver to those customers, and will continue to do so. If we look towards crossovers or the B-segment for the next car, those could make perfect sense.
Nissan has relatively straightforward options for an electric B-segment model, illustrated here in our exclusive image.
The smaller model could become a sister car to the Renault ZOE, potentially using its battery technology and platform.