MTSU grows green with Nissan Leafs
Nissan North American Inc. donated three vehicles to MTSU yesterday, giving the campus an edge on new transportation technology.
The newly-donated Nissan Leafs will be used in the motor pool along with a Titan truck for more heavy-duty transportation projects on campus. Nissan also donated two charging stations for the campus that can be used by students and the university.
“We are so grateful to have the relationship between MTSU and Nissan,” said Kevin Martin, director of Nissan Parts Quality Engineering. “These two organizations have long standing roots with the community at MTSU and globally. It’s great to show the dedication and our relationship with university. With the donation of these two vehicles, it also shows our dedication to the global universe.”
The Leaf offers new green technology as it runs solely on electricity. The vehicle has LED headlights and solar panels on the car to convert energy. City mileage for the Leaf reaches up to the equivalent of 106 mpg.
“If you ever get the opportunity to test drive a Leaf, do it, “ said Paige Presley, Nissan corporate communications specialist and MTSU ’07 graduate. “It is such a fun car to drive. This Leaf is going to give students something interesting to study and look at. It is something more innovative than your typical combustion engine.”
The cars will be used in and around campus for a variety of purposes, according to Joe Bales, vice president of university development and relations.
“The two cars we got today is the latest step in our relationship with Nissan,” Bales said. “Their energy and cost efficiency will really help us show we are trying to help our nation’s energy problems.”
As of now, Nissan plans to start building parts for the Leafs at the new Smyrna plant in Rutherford County by the end of the year. The new plant will produce the lithium–ion batteries that go into the cars.