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Nissan Leaf Will Help Cook Dinner During Power Blackouts: Cars

Nissan Motor Co. and Mitsubishi Motors Corp. say their electric cars can be used for more than just going to the grocery store. Soon, the battery-powered vehicles may also help owners cook dinner during a blackout.

Mitsubishi is working to increase the 100-watt discharge capacity of its i-MiEV electric car, which can already power small gadgets such as mobile phones with the use of an optional accessory, to 1,500 watts. At that level, “you’d be able to power a rice cooker or a microwave,” said Yoshikazu Nakamura, head of the company’s electric-vehicle business.