The 2011 Nissan Leaf electric car qualifies for a federal tax credit of up to
$7,500, effectively reducing the net base price from $33,720 to $26,220. In
addition, some states offer their own purchase incentives, which can be
combined with the federal credit. Other electric vehicle-related perks that
vary by city or state include single-occupant access to carpool lanes, free
metered parking and significantly reduced vehicle registration fees. Home
charging stations, which cut charging times in half compared to standard wall
outlets, are also eligible for attractive incentives. Nissan offers a useful
state-by-state guide to Leaf-specific incentives and perks at nissanusa.com.
Pros: "Quiet, reasonable fuel costs, Clean and Green"
Cons: "100 mile range - for long roadtrips"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"As an early adopter, we pay the price to help the movement towards sustainable clean energy options. While the Nissan Leaf has limited range (~100 miles depending on driving conditions), it is a very practical car for our daily use (~50 miles).
The interior of our 2011 Leaf is spacious with significant headroom and legroom in both front and rear seats. A few blind spots exist in the rear piers of the vehicle. Side mirrors help address these blind spots, but hope this can be more adequately adressed in future models.
To long term ownership value is to be determined, however the benefits of reduced fuel cost and use of HOV lanes during commute times are a significant immediate benefit and added value of the vehicle.
Considering the Federal tax credit, state air quality rebate, HOV sticker - there are many early adopter incentives going on currently (2011 / 2012) that helped sway our decision towards an all electric vehicle. With the rising cost of oil/gas our monthly transportation fuel cost is now ~ 1/6!!!! While initial sticker is slightly higher than an internal combustion engine or hybrid vehicle of same features, the Total Cost of Ownership (when compared to ICE or hybrid cars) is actually less (no oil/oil filter changes, no timing belt / pump change).
The long term unknown is the battery life beyond warranty and how the warranty coverage will apply should we need to envoke coverage. We are confident that Nissan will honor their 96 month 125,000 mile warranty and that the car will provide enough power/range for our daily needs.
We plan to replace our other internal combustion engine vehicle when the electric rapid charging (quick charge) infrastructure has matured in California (and hopefully all of United States), and when a future generation mass market EV (from a EV technology and thought leader such as Nissan, Toyota, Tesla or other) can provide 300 miles of range in a vehicle priced under $40,000 after incentives."
"My Nissan Leaf is the most AMAZING vehicle on the planet. Think about it, the motor has only 7 or 8 moving parts, No transmission, No Gas No Oil, No Trnsmission fluid, Has full torque from 0 RPM, Very Quick and will take most V6 vehicles off the line, Runs with the big dogs on the freeway, I would like to say it will easily do 100 MPH but I won't because that's against the law (just trust me on this one), I was owner of an Auto and RV Service Center and I have worked on thousands of cars, trucks and RV's and nothing has impressed me as this NISSAN LEAF. This vehicle made WORLD CAR OF THE YEAR!. Plus NO EMISSIONs.
Note: My Nissan Leaf replaced my quad cab pick-up and the wife and I took the money we would spent on gas, oil and maintenance every week and put it in a savings account and two years later we have $9,020.00 dollars in the account. Also, If I was paying for electricity it would cost me only about $35.00 per month. However, sense I have Solar and don't have an electric bill, it is all pure clean and free energy. How many miles can you drive for free? If you want to go green this is the way to do it."
"This 2013 LEAF SL is our second LEAF. We had a 2011 SL on which we accumulated 12,000 miles in two years. Yes, we are low mileage drivers. Why the upgrade? Improved range, leather interior and some other feature upgrades - such as optional Bose audio and around view monitor that uses four cameras to check out surroundings while parking.
LEAF is not for everyone. With it you can't drive from San Diego to Las Vegas. But with all of the money that you save on gas, you will be able to fly to Vegas, save time, and save money. The number one question I receive is "How far will it go?" My answer is consistent - if driving range is that important to you, this is not the right car for you. But if you fit the EV profile - daily drives total less than 60 or 70 miles (which is roughly 80 percent of the market according to various studies), LEAF is near perfect. The EPA range is 75 miles, but many drivers report the dreaded range anxiety as mileage increases, which is why I posited 60 to 70 miles above.
Annual energy cost (according to the EPA) is $500 for someone driving 15,000 miles each year. The average new car achieves 23 miles per gallon (combined) and will consume $2,550 worth of gasoline each year at current gas prices. $2,050 energy savings each year of ownership adds up to significant savings. These numbers will need to be tailored to your own annual mileage.
Pros? Time savings (no hunting for gas stations then waiting to fuel, and charging while we sleep). Reduced operating costs (no oil & filter changes, no tune-ups, no waiting for the above). Reduced dependency on oil.
Cons? Nissan could have used a better quality material for the carpet. The floor mats help, but the carpet material is cheap. If that's the only con... I can live with it.
Would I do it again? I already did!"
Cons: "Charger contractor not responsive, iPhone app fail"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"Nissan did an outstanding job on the Leaf. After all the tax incentives, the car represents the best value in transportation. Setting aside political (foreign oil dependency) and environmental (carbon emission) ideologies, the Leaf completely stands alone as the most modern and thoughtfully engineered urban vehicle today. It rides smoothly, accelerates quickly, and is equipped with all the digital wizardry from Bluetooth to Carwings. After having driven Mercedes for over 20 years, I traded in my S550 for the Leaf and was glad that I did. I was mentally prepared for the Leaf's limited range. So far city commute is manageable. The only bad experience is with Aeroenvironment, Nissan's contractor for the Level 2 charger. I went with an alternate local solution using a ClipperCreek charger. It's cheaper ($1800 includes the charger and installation), and in my experience much better than Nissan's contractor. The only other minor issue is that Carwing's iPhone app doesn't work with the 4S. The car itself is near perfect."
"Besides driving the LEAF, the coolest thing about it is how interested people are to know more about it. Also, when you give someone a ride and they have this confused look on their face when the car starts to move. "Aren't you going to start it?", they ask, and then... "Whoa-we're moving!?"
The LEAF has an incredible amount of torque off the line. And it does 0 to 60 mph in 7.9 seconds. While it's not a sports car, the guy in his 2012 Camaro next to you at the stop light is going to get his feelings hurt (for the first 100 feet).
I'm leasing the LEAF. I'll have the option to buy it at $15,000. If the market for this car is anything like it was for the Prius when it first came out, I'll be able to sell it immediately at a nice profit."
Pros: "Near zero emissions, fun to drive, cool technology, no more gas stations"
Cons: "Cheap sun visors, manual seats, no spontaneous errands more than 5 miles out of my way."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"While not for everyone, if you meet the target market for this car; daily commute under 70 miles, temperate climate, ability to have a 240 volt/30 amp charger installed, second gas/diesel vehicle for weekends and trips, I highly recommend the Leaf as a way to reduce your dependance on BIG OIL. Range anxiety is the issue most touted by journalists and commentors as the Leaf's achilles heel. If your daily commute is 70 miles or less, you will never have a problem with running out of power. Driving dynamics are much better than I expected. Power delivery is smooth and linear, handling is suprisingly nimble and ride quality is communicative without being jarring. Interior technology is superb with high-end features that you would expect in a $35K car. Interior surfaces are acceptable, but are definately a less than ideal combination. The only disappointment in regards to the interior is the sun visors and the manual seat adjustment, both have an econo-box feel to them and are a reminder that Nissan cut some corners in the interior to deliver the Leaf at a almost reasonable price. The exterior styling is distinctive and quite practical, but I like hatchbacks and wagons. At almost the same price as my Volvo V50 wagon, I think the Leaf is a great way to support alternative fuel vehicle development without sacrificing my comfort."
"This has been the best new car I have ever purchased (about 4th). All worked as published, and you can see a lot of thought went in from the bottom up to make this an efficient car that still feels like a "real" car. There are several indicators to let you know how efficiently you are driving - so up to you whether you want to be a lead foot or not - and how much energy distance you have left. The only thing that has worn in 31,000 miles are the tires."
"I leased a 2013 Nissan Leaf about two months ago. I was told that I could get up to 116 miles per charge, this would depend on outside temperature and driving conditions. I am lucky to get 60 miles on a charge when the temperature is 70 to 80 degrees. I would really hate to see how low the mileage would go on a real cold or real hot day. The car is a lot of fun to drive and works great for very short trips."
"This is a car for the future, but the future is already here for me. I hear no other noise but the quiet wind noise and occasionally the tire noise when the car runs over some lane dividers. Hey! I've already received the $5,000 state incentive; and I've also received my HOV sticker. The best of all, I've not bought any gasoline for the last three (3) months. In addition, I've also learned how to drive normally and conserve the battery charges without driving the ECO mode. It is just great!"