The Nissan Leaf will be delivered to customers beginning this fall. Governor Pat Quinn took one for a spin Thursday during an event at the Field Museum.
The car is already being sold in some parts of the United States and in other countries.
Quinn said Nissan decided to start selling the cars in Illinois a little early because of the good infrastructure. That includes nearly 280 charging stations.
"I think it is important to build this network of charging stations," Quinn said. "We want to be the electric vehicle capital of the United States, right here in Illinois, and we can do this. It's going to create jobs."
Quinn said the Leaf is very quiet and "has a lot of pep."
Quinn said he would like for there to be an electric highway from Chicago to Springfield.