Nissan Motor Company Ltd. announced on December 11 its new mid-term environmental action plan, Nissan Green Program 2010 (NGP 2010). This plan is designed to fulfill Nissan’s environmental philosophy of “symbiosis of people, vehicles and nature” and contribute to a sustainable mobile society.

Highlights of Nissan Green Program 2010 include:

  • Incorporating CO2 reduction as one of the key management performance indicators.
  • Launch a “three-liter car” with a target of 2010; a gasoline-fueled car that runs 100km on three liters of fuel.
  • Expand availability of Flexible Fuel Vehicles (FFV) within the next three years.
  • Launch Nissan electric vehicle early in the next decade.
  • Develop Nissan’s original hybrid vehicle targeted for launch in FY2010.
  • Accelerate development of plug-in hybrid technology.
  • Reduce CO2 emissions from global manufacturing plants by 7 percent compared to 2005 by 2010.

“The Nissan Green Program 2010 provides a transparent view of Nissan’s future commitments to all aspects of environmental management,” said Toshiyuki Shiga, chief operating officer, Nissan Motor Company. “Nissan Green Program 2010 has been designed to address immediate challenges as well as creating the foundation towards a long-term sustainable business model.”

Nissan is focused on three core areas related to the environment:
1. Reducing CO2 emissions
2. Reducing exhaust emissions
3. Accelerating recycling efforts.

The Nissan Green Program 2010 is specifically focused on reducing CO2 emissions both from our products as well as from day-to-day corporate activities.

In order to make reducing CO2 part of the major decision making processes of the company, CO2 has been added to internal management performance indicators. Previously, the indicators were quality, cost and time (QCT). Starting this fiscal year CO2 has been added to create QCT-C.

“Our product development philosophy is to deliver in a sustainable way, the right technology, at the right time, in the right market, and at the right value to the customer”, said Carlos Tavares, executive vice president for product planning and corporate strategy, Nissan Motor Company. “QCT-C is a key management tool that places CO2 performance at the core of our business model.”

For the foreseeable future, Nissan believes that the internal combustion engine will continue to serve as the primary power source for vehicles. Under NGP 2010, Nissan will accelerate development of technologies that deliver improvements to the efficiency of conventional gasoline powertrains. For example, Nissan will develop powertrains that support the development of a “three-liter car”; a car that will travel 100 kilometers using just three liters of gasoline. This product’s launch is targeted at 2010, starting from Japan.

Looking ahead, vehicles using electric motors with the power derived from batteries or hydrogen fuel cells will become increasingly important and ultimately may replace the internal combustion engine. Nissan continues to invest substantially into all aspects of electric vehicle technology. Leading that program will be the development of a hybrid vehicle that uses Nissan original technologies for a FY2010 launch target. In 2007, Nissan will introduce its first hybrid car – the US market Altima sedan – which utilizes a hybrid system developed outside the company.

In the early part of the next decade, Nissan will launch the next generation fuel cell vehicle with its own in-house developed stack and a battery-powered electric vehicle. At the same time, Nissan is preparing for a new company to develop, produce and market advanced lithium-ion batteries, a key technological component for all electric powertrains. In addition, it will accelerate development of plug-in hybrid vehicles.

“At Nissan, we believe that in order to develop vehicles that are truly environmentally friendly, we need to make significant advances in internal combustion technology while working on electrical power sources in parallel,” said Mitsuhiko Yamashita, executive vice president for research and development, Nissan Motor Company.

Nissan Green Program 2010 Targets
1. Reducing Total Volume of CO2 Emissions
1-1 Reduce CO2 emissions through the proactive application of technologies that improve the efficiency of engines and transmissions
  • Launch six vehicles in Japan that feature a package of environmental technologies. These models will exceed 2010 Japanese regulated fuel economy standards by 20 percent, emit 75 percent less exhaust emissions than 2005 standards and will be equipped with an advanced cabin air quality management system.
  • From FY2010 introduce gasoline engine technologies that will enhance fuel economy and at the same time reduce CO2 emissions equivalent to diesel engine levels, including:
    1. Combining direct injection gasoline engines with next generation turbocharger systems (four-cylinder engines)
    2. Combining direct injection gasoline engine with Variable Valve Event & Lift System (VEL) for V6 and V8 engines.
  • Adopt VEL, which reduces CO2 emissions by 10 percent, starting from 2007 in Japan and North America.
  • Introduce a “three-liter car” with CO2 emission levels comparable to a hybrid vehicle with a target of 2010, starting in Japan.
  • Development of new clean diesel engines for Europe, Japan, North America and China, including:
    1. Launch Euro four emission standard two-liter diesel engine in first half of 2007, starting in Europe.
    2. Achieve the United States Tier2 BIN5 emissions standards
    3. Achieve Post-New Long-Term exhaust emission regulations of Japan
  • Continual development and introduction of bio-ethanol capable vehicles
    1. All current Nissan gasoline engines are now capable to run on a blend of up to 10 percent bio-ethanol (E10)
    2. Introduction of Armada FFV (E85) in the United States in 2007. This joins the Titan FFV (E85), which has been on sale since 2004.
    3. Introduce 100 percent bio-ethanol fuel (E100)-ready model for the Brazilian market by 2009
  • Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) strategy: achieve one million sales of CVT-equipped vehicles by the end of FY2007. CVT’s emit up to 10 percent less CO2 than conventional automatic transmissions.
1-2 Accelerate development of electric powerplant technologies to lower costs and increase performance:
  • Develop HEV with Nissan’s original hybrid system to be launched in Japan and the United States with a target of FY2010.
  • Introduce Nissan electric vehicle starting in Japan during the early part of the next decade.
  • Accelerate development of plug-in hybrid technologies that can utilize grid power to recharge batteries in addition to the onboard charging system.
  • Introduce next generation fuel cell vehicle into the United States and Japan in the early part of the next decade. Key technology focus on advanced Nissan fuel stack system.
  • Preparation of a new company focused on the development, production and marketing of lithium-ion batteries.
1-3 Manufacturing
A central focus of the manufacturing part of NGP2010 is on reducing CO2 emissions from our plants by 7 percent (global per-unit CO2, by 2010 compared to FY2005)
2. Clean Emissions - reduction in harmful substances
2-1. Product & Technology:Early compliance with future exhaust regulations in our major markets.
2-2. Manufacturing
  • Global: Reduce volatile organic compounds (VOC) emissions to levels lower than the local government regulations
  • Japan: 15% cut in VOC emissions by volume (compared to FY2005)
3. Recycling
3-1. Product & Technology
Increase the recycle rate for end-of-life vehicles:
  • Global: Accelerate current activities to achieve an average 95 percent recyclable rate by end of FY2010. In Japan, this is five years ahead of the 2015 regulations.
3-2. Manufacturing
Improvement in the recycling rate from plant waste
  • Global: Achieve best level in industry
  • Japan: Achieve 100 percent recycling of all plant waste materials

“Our focus in manufacturing has been on the continual improvement of our environmental performance;” said Tadao Takahashi, executive vice president for manufacturing, Nissan Motor Company. “Our new environmental plan takes that performance to the ultimate goal of zero waste in our manufacturing processes.”

Since 1993, Nissan has deployed regular environmental action plans. In addition, the company is continually focused on making significant improvements in all major areas of operation including product development, manufacturing, sales and service. Nissan Green Program 2005, announced in 2002, set challenging targets that included early achievement of 2010 fuel economy standards in Japan, early widespread compliance of Ultra-Low Emission Vehicle (ULEV) standards in Japan, and a recycling rate of 95 percent. With few exceptions, all these targets have been met or exceeded. Further, Nissan has been recognized for its information disclosure in the area of environmental reporting; it has won the 2005 Excellent Sustainability Report award, marking the second straight year for the company to win the prestigious Global Environmental Forum (GEF) award.