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Nissan LEAF

The independent definitive Nissan LEAF video review
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    TAKE IT OR LEAF IT (some text hidden)

    By Jonathan Crouch

    Nissan's LEAF has rejuvenated its all-electric proposition in second generation guise. Jonathan Crouch reports.

    Ten Second Reviewword count: 70

    The Nissan LEAF has always been a car that divides opinion. Some love this fully electric vehicle for its bold engineering and surprisingly enjoyable driving dynamics, but to date, many other green-minded potential buyers have struggled to make a case for it. That could change thanks to the improvements made to this second generation model, which offers a further big enhancement in driving range and some really clever new technology.

    Backgroundword count: 155

    You're probably already aware of this - but it bears repeating: the Nissan LEAF is the world's best selling electric vehicle. You might think that would equate to sales in their tens of millions. Actually, the truth is that following its launch back in 2010 and throughout a production life that lasted nearly eight years, the first generation version of this battery-powered Nissan shifted 283,000 units. Worldwide. So we really aren't talking massive numbers here. That says less about the LEAF - a design we've always thoroughly respected - and more about the slow global take-up of battery-powered cars, which continues to lag behind industry predictions. Mostly, that's been because of the restrictions that fully battery-powered vehicles put on driving range, though that's something that's changing as automotive electric technology changes. It's certainly developed enough to make this second generation LEAF well worth another look if you couldn't quite justify the purchase of its predecessor.

    Driving Experienceword count: 273

    Let's deal quickly with the first thing you'll want to know about: driving range. We remember vividly setting off in the first generation LEAF model back in 2010 and struggling to get much more than 60-70 miles out of it between charges. With this second generation design, Nissan claims a homologated WLTP driving range of 168 miles from the standard 40kWh model - or 239 miles (WLTP) from the alternative 'e+' version with its 62kWh battery. Even if you think in terms of a 'real world' driving range being about two-thirds of those total figures (which is our experience anyway), you can't deny that these readings represent an impressive improvement, representing a 50% increase over the final version of the previous model. The 40kWh lithium-ion battery that virtually all LEAF models use is larger this time round (the previous generation car had a 30kWh battery) but the unit is no larger in terms of actual size. It produces 110kW (which equates to 148bhp), which significantly improves on the previous model's figures of 80kW / 108bhp. That means pulling power's up too - a rise to 320Nm - making the LEAF feel even faster from a standing start: Nissan say that the 0-62mph time has been improved by 15%, which should translate into a sprint time of about 9.8s. Previously with LEAF models, the amount of retardation you got when lifting off the throttle meant that the brake pedal was something you rarely needed to use. This time round, you'll hardly need it at all thanks to 'e-Pedal' technology that can bring the car to a complete stop when you come off the accelerator.

    To see the full road test text contact us on 0330 0020 227

    Pictures (high res disabled)

    Statistics (subset of data only)

    Min

    Max

    0-62 mph (s):

    11.5

    Combined mpg:

    5.1

    5.2

    Height (mm):

    1550

    Length (mm):

    4445

    Max Speed (mph):

    89

    Power (PS):

    107

    ... and 4 other stats available

    Scoring (subset of scores)

    Category: Hybrid, Plug-in, Electric & Hydrogen

    Performance
    80%
    Handling
    80%
    Comfort
    90%
    Space
    80%
    Styling, Build, Value, Equipment, Depreciation, Handling, Insurance and Total scores are available with our full data feed.

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