Nissan has unveiled a 100% electric emergency response vehicle concept, designed to provide mobile power supply to areas affected by natural disasters or extreme weather. Based on the Nissan LEAF, The ‘RE’ in the cute wordplay name, RE-LEAF, represents the three elements of disaster preparedness: response, recovery, and resilience.
Some modifications were made specifically to allow RE-LEAF to drive directly into critical areas through the debris-covered roads, such as the chunky off-road wheels, and weatherproof plug sockets mounted directly to the exterior of the vehicle – which can supply 110- and 230-volt power from the car’s high-capacity lithium-ion battery.
The rear seats have been removed and the floor levelled to provide storage for essential equipment, while a custom bulkhead cage separates the front seats from the cargo area. A bespoke pull-out desk extends from the trunk – fitted with a 32-inch LED screen and dedicated power supply – designed to create an operational hub to run communications from and manage the recovery process.
Nissan Europe, Head of Electric Passenger Cars and Infrastructure, Helen Perry said “We’re constantly exploring ways that electric vehicles can enrich our lives, beyond just zero-emission transportation.
“Concepts like the RE-LEAF show the possible application of EVs in disaster management and demonstrate that smarter, cleaner technology can help save lives and provide greater resilience,” she added.
Nissan says the RE-LEAF is a demonstration of the potential of electric vehicles in disaster recovery. Although it’s a working concept, the technology is already being used in real-world applications.
Nissan previously utilised the LEAF to provide emergency power and transportation following natural disasters in Japan since 2011, and the company has also formed partnerships with more than 60 local governments to support disaster relief efforts.