TORONTO (CP) -- Fully electric vehicles should be widely available to Canadian consumers within two years, with offerings in the pipeline from Nissan, Ford, Toyota, Mitsubishi and others, automakers say.
"I think what you're hearing across the board is that 2012 is the time when you're going to have critical mass and a huge number of (electric) products coming forward from every manufacturer," Toyota Canada managing director, Stephen Beatty, told a conference on green vehicle technology Friday in Toronto.
"(That) becomes the big moment when you see that transformation in the auto industry in North America and electric comes on big time. It'll be very fascinating to see how the market responds to that," Beatty added.
Nissan is poised to be the first major carmaker to introduce a purely electric consumer vehicle into the Canadian market, with its Leaf set to be in showrooms here by late 2011, said Mark McDade, director of marketing at Nissan Canada. Nissan already sells the Leaf in the United States.
Ford, meanwhile, said it plans to launch its Transit Connect battery-electric van and an electric version of the Focus sedan in roughly the same timeframe. Mitsubishi hopes to begin selling its zero-emission iMiev in Canada by late 2011 and Toyota intends to launch an all-electric commuter car by 2012.
Beatty predicted that there will be eight to 12 fully electric vehicles on the market in Canada by 2012. Currently, only small companies like Tesla Motors sell zero-emission cars here.
None of the major automakers are ready to disclose what their electric vehicles will sell for in Canada, but in the United States Nissan has priced the Leaf at US$32,700, not including government subsidies.