Nissan Leaf Review


The Nissan Leaf is one of the most popular all-electric cars in the UK. The new Leaf sports a larger 40 kWh battery, which provides an average of 133 miles from a full charge depending on driving conditions—and the option for an even larger 62 kWh battery in the e+ version. It's not the cheapest EVs in the market, but with a starting price of £26,845 (net of the £3,000 government grant), the Leaf is one of the best, cheap all-electric cars for sale in the UK. 435 litres of boot space even make it suitable for a family, with more room for school bags and game kit than the Renault Zoe or BMW i3.

Pros...

  • 435 litres of boot space
  • Starting price under £27,000
  • Real life range around 133 miles per full charge

Cons...

Review: Will the Nissan Leaf work for you?

The Nissan Leaf is one of the best all-electric cars available in the UK, and is a good option for those needing a run-around car to cover short distances. The new, larger battery can handle distances up to 155 miles in the summer (combined city and motorway driving) or up to 110 miles in the winter.

Boot space has risen from 370 litres to 435 litres in the latest model. In fact, the Leaf has more behind-the-seats storage space than most other all-electric cars, setting aside a handful of cars such as luxury Tesla and Mercedes models.

Chart ranking the electric cars with big boots in the UK market
The Kia e-Niro has the biggest boot for an affordable all-electric car

The savings from driving an all-electric car can be significant. The Nissan Leaf costs less than £6 for a full charge at home, equating to a cost of around 4p per mile, significantly less than the 15.8p per mile cost for a petrol car. For example, the average British driver logs 7,600 miles a year—this driver could save over £800 on fuel for an electric car compared to a petrol car. Add to that £0 in vehicle taxes and no congestion charge in London, and driving the Leaf could save you thousands of pounds in your first few years of car ownership.

Charging can be as quick as 40 minutes at a rapid motorway charging station. With the faster 6.6 kWh on-board charger now included as standard, time to achieve a full charge on a home wallbox will take around 7.5 hours.

Nissan Leaf Features

  • Average 133 mile range (110 in winter, 155 in summer) of combined city and motorway driving
  • Running costs around 4p per mile
  • Charge times from 30 min to 7.5 hours

Range & Battery

The new Nissan Leaf is available with two battery options: 40 kWh and 64 kWh. What is the range on these batteries? Electric cars usually offer a longer range in warm, summer months; the battery depletes faster in cold weather. The chart below shows estimated real-life ranges for the 40 kWh Nissan Leaf in summer, winter and an overall average.

chart showing driving ranges for nissan leaf
How Far Can the new Nissan Leaf Drive?

The 64 kWh e+ gets around 50% more range than the 40 kWh battery, providing around 170 miles of range in cool weather and up to 235 combined mileage in warmer weather (with up to 300 miles if you only drive in the city).

What is the Range on the Nissan Leaf? (40kWh/64kWh)Cold WeatherMild Weather
City130 mi/200 mi200 mi/300 mi
Highway95 mi/145 mi120 mi/185 mi
Combined110 mi/170 mi155 mi/235 mi

In fact, the e+ 64 kWh model has made our list of top 5 most affordable EVs for long range:

Best Affordable Electric Cars for RangeSummer Range (mi)Winter Range (mi)Starting Price
Renault Zoe Z.E. 50 R110230165£26,170
Nissan Leaf e+ 62 kWh235170£33,295
Kia Soul EV 64 kWh265195£34,295
Kia e-Niro 64 kWh270195£34,995
Hyundai Kona Electric 64 kWh290210£35,600

Charging

Charging your Nissan Leaf can take anywhere from 60 minutes up to 7.5 hours, depending on battery size and to a larger extent the type of charging point. Charging points can supply electricity anywhere from 2.3 kilowatts per hour on a domestic plug (slow) up to 50 kilowatts an hour on a CHAdeMO motorway charger ("rapid charger"). The higher the electricity supply rate, the faster the battery will charge.

The new Leaf comes with their faster 6.6 kWh on-board charger as standard now (which reduces charging times by half over the previous 3.3 kWh charger option) when you use the Type 2 connector, for instance on a home wallbox.

The table below shows approximate charging times the Leaf by type of charging point. You'll notice the times for the 50 kWh rapid charge points only reflect an 80% charge—this is because battery charging speeds really slow down beyond an 80% charge. Most people use rapid chargers when they're on the road and only take the time to charge to 80% before they start driving again.

Nissan Leaf Charging Times7kW Home "Wallbox" (100% Charge)Rapid 50 kWh DC Charger (80% Charge)
40 kWh battery7.5 hours60 minutes
64 kWh battery11.5 hours90 minutes
Which Port?Standard Charging PortRapid Charging Port

Nissan recommends POD Point and Chargemaster for home wallbox solutions.

Ports

The Nissan Leaf comes with two ports: a standard charging port and a rapid charging port. Most of the time, you'll use the standard charging port: on a domestic socket, a wallbox or compatible public fast chargers. When you have access to a rapid DC charging station you'll use the rapid charging point, for instance at some motorway charging stations and Nissan dealers.

Nissan Leaf charge point
Standard Port, on the Right
Nissan Leaf charge point
Rapid Port, on the Left

Performance

The Nissan Leaf accelerates from 0 to 62 mph in 7.9 seconds—a massive improvement over the 11.5 seconds on the previous model. While this is still slower than Tesla electric cars, the new Leaf is nearly as quick as the BMW i3 (0 to 60 in 6.9 seconds). Max speed is 90 miles an hour.

The e+ is a bit quicker with a 0 to 60 mph time of 7.3 seconds.

Trim

In the UK, customers can choose between the Visia, Acenta, N-Connecta or Tekna trim levels. Full details can be found here, but we've summarized some of the features in the table below. Each model includes features offered by the model listed above, plus additional features.

Nissan Leaf Features
Acentae-Pedal; Nissan Safety Shield (lane departure warning, intelligent emergency braking with pedestrian recognition, intelligent lane intervention, intelligent cruise control, etc.); NissanConnect Services 8" Touchscreen Navigation and Entertainment System, rear view camera, preset air conditioning, nearby charging stations; Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto® Smartphone App Integration; 16" Alloy wheels; 6.6 kW On-Board Charger and 50kW ChaDeMo Rapid Charge Port
N-ConnectaFeatures on the Acenta, plus Around View parking cameras, parking sensors, heated seats, heated steering wheel, privacy glass, 17" Alloy wheels, etc.
TeknaDriver assistance, part-leather seats, LED foglights, Bose audio system and speakers, etc.
e+ N-Tec0-62 MPH within 6.9 seconds, LED pack, higher range, etc.
e+ Tekna0-62 MPH within 6.9 seconds, higher range

Nissan Leaf Starting Prices

The Nissan Leaf starts at £26,845 for the Acenta trim, net of the £3,000 government grant.

TrimOn The Road Cash Price after Government Incentive, from
Acenta£26,845
N-Connecta£28,145
Tekna£29,845
e+ N-Tec£33,295
e+ Tekna£36,395

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