Nissan is to increase production of its Leaf electric vehicle in line with its plan to manufacture 10,000 units by the end of March.

Following the launch of the Leaf in December, Nissan has so far produced about 3,000 units.

Media reports in Japan have said that production of the EV has fallen behind as the company gets to grips with new production methods.

Senior vice president Toshiharu Sakai told a news conference today: “The issue (for increasing production) lies in the output of batteries rather than auto bodies, but we have made various arrangements and we can achieve the target.''

He added: ''We began building the Leaf in a cautious manner so we could offer [high quality] cars.''

Sakai said that Nissan expects to meet its output target of 50,000 units in fiscal 2011 ending in March next year.

The Leaf is being built on the same production lines as conventional engine cars. In the production process, batteries and electric motors are installed in the EV while other cars are fitted with petrol tanks and engines.