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The Nissan LEAF Makes an “Electric” Debut at CES

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During the first week of January each year, the International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) takes place in Las Vegas. Thousands of exhibitors and tens of thousands attendees descend on “The Strip” to see what’s new and what’s next in tech. This year was no different as Nissan capitalized on the electric atmosphere of this huge tradeshow to present an electric offering of their own – the all-new Nissan LEAF.

Test DriveAt multiple events during the week including an off-the-hook “plug-in experience” for 300 at Little Buddha at the Palms Resort Casino and a test-drive program at Gordon-Biersch just down the street from the Las Vegas Convention Center, Nissan cemented its reputation as an innovative car company that cares about the Earth and all its occupants. To paint the picture of the party at the Palms, what do you get when you bring a guy in a polar bear costume, a few hundred CES participants, a bevy of beautiful women dressed in botanical outfits and the new Nissan LEAF together? That was the situation January 5th when media and technology enthusiasts gathered to talk about the first mass-produced all-electric vehicle in the world while enjoying the atmosphere. Folks dined on top-notch cuisine, sampled Leafy Mojitos and took photos with the Nissan LEAF polar bear.

LEAF PartyIn addition to the educational aspect of the evening, there was also a little Las Vegas thrown in. Bowers & Wilkins – the stereo and automotive sound-system experts – provided a number of raffle prizes. Headphones, portable sound systems and more were on display for people to drool over, and then these luxury items went home with a few happy winners.

Just for attending the event at the Palms, the first 200 guests received a Best Buy gift card and their own stuffed polar bear.

The next day, January 6, using social media tools to bolster traditional marketing, Nissan and Automotive Rhythms created a memorable test-drive experience at Gordon-Biersch Restaurant. With Twitter, Facebook, Eventbrite and even 4Square, AR got people more excited about the Nissan LEAF…and a happy, energetic and curious crowd was the result. Nearly 50 media professionals covering CES 2011 stopped by the restaurant to shoot video, conduct interviews and sit behind the wheel and push the LEAF’s start button.

LEAF PartyFrom 11 am to 4 pm, there was hardly a lull in the action as people talked about the vehicle’s zero emissions and how it can be controlled remotely with a smartphone. The Nissan polar bear made another appearance late in the day to take a ride. But with all the buzz that day around the LEAF, it stayed in character and remained whisper-quiet, except for the occasional soft beep when it was backed out of a parking space.

Ultimately, CES is all about technology. This year, Nissan and the all-new Nissan LEAF proved that tech can also be a whole lot of fun.


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