Nissan Sprouts Leaf Rollout Plans

Nissan LeafNissan‘s Leaf is almost ready to be picked. The company announced its all-electric car will be available to buy as early as December, but only for those in California, Washington, Oregon, Arizona and Tennessee. Other parts of the country will have to hold their horsepower a little bit longer.

Nissan chose to release to those five states first because they’re home to the EV project, the world’s largest electric vehicle and infrastructure deployment designed to collect data on EV performance in different climates and terrains. ECOtality, which runs the project, received a $99.8 million grant from the Department of Energy last year and will also study charging infrastructure effectiveness and revenue models.

The Leaf will arrive in Texas and Hawaii in January of 2011, head to North Carolina, Florida, Georgia, Washington DC, Virginia, Maryland, South Carolina and Alabama in April and roll into the rest of the country by year’s end.

Priced at $32,780, the Leaf is more affordable than the $41,000 price tag Chevy announced for its Volt today.