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Federal Tax Credit Up To $7,500! 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.

2013 Nissan LEAF

Overview
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2013 Nissan LEAF Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 8.0

The 2013 Leaf is the epitome of Nissan's determination for the continual advancement of electric cars. Case in point, the 2013 Nissan Leaf boasts an extended range, faster charge times, and a new entry-level "S" trim that holds the title as the most affordable 5-passenger electric car on the market. Although the notion of owning and operating an electric car might seem a bit daunting, the Nissan Leaf delivers the same basic driving experience as its conventional rivals. In the end, however, the pitfall of every modern electric vehicle is limited range, and the Leaf's EPA-estimated sub-100 mile range disqualifies it as a feasible alternative for many car shoppers. While the 2013 Leaf is unable to evade its fundamental shortcomings, green-minded buyers who have been waiting to purchase a reasonably-priced electric car will take delight in Nissan's zero-emission marvel.

You'll Like This Car If...

Whether you seek to reduce your carbon footprint, eliminate fuel costs, or simply despise gas stations, the all-electric 2013 Nissan Leaf won't disappoint. In addition, the Leaf's new pricing strategy proposes a strong affordability advantage over competitors like the Ford Focus EV, Honda Fit EV, and plug-in Chevrolet Volt.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you have an unpredictable driving schedule, travel more than 100 miles per day, or live in a residence without 220-volt power support, we recommend setting your eco aspirations on a plug-in hybrid like the new Ford C-Max Energi, Prius Plug-in or the Chevrolet Volt.

What's New for 2013

Now in its third year of production, the Nissan Leaf undergoes a significant price reduction along with a number of enhancements for the 2013 model year. Key revisions to the lineup include a new entry-level "S" trim, a newly available onboard 220-volt charger that reduces charging time to roughly four hours, and improved energy efficiency thanks to refined aerodynamics, additional regenerative breaking capabilities, and better energy management.

Driving the LEAF

Driving Impressions Save for the absence of engine noise, the 2013 Nissan Leaf drives and handles like any mainstream vehicle. Whether in urban stop-and-go traffic or on a windy back road, we...

found the Leaf to be utterly unremarkable, and we mean that in a good way. The electric motor's abundance of low-end torque provides brisk acceleration, particularly when pulling away from a stop. Although it restricts overall power output, activating the driver-selectable Eco mode can boost maximum range by nearly ten percent. The electric power steering is light and properly weighted for both highway and city driving. Press on the brakes and you'll notice that the 2013 Leaf lacks the vague, unnatural brake feel associated with most regenerative braking systems. Even the low-rolling-resistance tires serve up more grip than expected, allowing, if not encouraging, a modicum of spirited motoring.

CARWINGS TELEMATICS
This handy smartphone application allows Leaf owners to monitor their vehicle's state of charge, begin or end a charging session, and adjust the climate controls from virtually anywhere.

WHISPER-QUIET OPERATION
Although electric powertrains are inherently quiet, Nissan engineers worked to further reduce ambient noise levels by incorporating such sound-suppressing technologies as vortex-shedding body pieces, an acoustic front windshield, and an aerodynamic antenna. With the Nissan Leaf, tranquility comes standard.

2013 Nissan LEAF Details
Interior

The 2013 Nissan Leaf's contemporary exterior is complemented by a futuristic yet user-friendly interior. The spacious greenhouse can accommodate four full-size adults and a small amount of cargo. Furthermore, the tall roofline and generous expanses of glass give the cabin an airy feel. The front seats are relatively comfortable, though they don't provide much side support. In a nod to the Leaf's eco-friendly mission, the seat upholstery is crafted from recycled materials. And since a bag of golf clubs nearly exceeds the physical limitations of the diminutive 11.7-cubic-foot cargo bay, the rear seat features a 60/40-split design for transporting larger items.

Exterior

Although it might seem as if Nissan's design team borrowed a few styling cues from a 1980s sci-fi film, the Leaf's unconventional shape was developed to optimize aerodynamic efficiency. Additional streamlining elements include contoured taillights, ultra-lightweight alloy wheels wrapped in low-rolling-resistance tires, and headlight fins that direct air away from the side mirrors. These wind- cheating components yield a slippery 0.29 drag coefficient while helping to minimize wind noise. Recharging the Leaf is a relatively simple process, as the charge port resides conveniently within the front grille area.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

In base "S" form, the 2013 Nissan Leaf includes automatic climate control, keyless access with push-button start, heated front and rear seats, a heated steering wheel, and a 4-speaker audio system with Bluetooth connectivity and a USB port for portable music players. Mid-tier SV models add navigation, Pandora Internet radio compatibility for iPhones, and aluminum-alloy wheels, while the range-topping SL trim includes a solar panel on the rear spoiler, low-draw LED headlights, and a quick-charge port capable of delivering an 80 percent recharge in 30 minutes with a public DC fast charger. In terms of safety, every 2013 Leaf comes equipped with six airbags, a full range of electronic stability aids, and three years of complimentary roadside assistance.

Optional Equipment

The Nissan Leaf sees a handful of enticing new features added to its options list for 2013. Chief among them is Nissan's celebrated AroundView monitor, which provides a birds-eye view of the vehicle while parking, and a 7-speaker Bose premium audio system. Regardless of which model grade you choose, the 220-volt home charging station is a must-have for any electric car owner. This hardwired unit carries a rather lofty $2,200 price tag, though tax credits are available to help offset the cost.

Under the Hood

Energized by a 24kWh lithium-ion battery pack mounted beneath the floor (warranted for eight years/100,000 miles), the Leaf's 80kW/107-horsepower motor churns out 207 lb-ft of torque from zero rpm. Power is directed to the front wheels via a single-speed reduction gear, enabling a 0-to-60-mph sprint of about 10 seconds with a top speed of 90 mph. In the end, the Leaf's forte is an ability to run on inexpensive energy, and Nissan claims a full recharge will cost approximately $3.00. For those who are unfamiliar with electric cars, cold temperatures and aggressive driving habits will have a significant impact on total range, so be sure to consider the facts before heading to the dealership.

AC synchronous electric motor
24kWh lithium-ion battery pack
80kW/107 horsepower @ 2,730-9,800 rpm
207 lb-ft of torque @ 0-2,730 rpm
EPA-estimated range: N/A
EPA city/highway fuel economy equivalent: N/A mpge

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2013 Nissan LEAF Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.7
Out of 10

Based on 61 Ratings for the 2011 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.4/10
    Quality
    9.1/10
  • Reliability
    9.2/10
    Performance
    9.0/10
  • Comfort
    9.0/10
    Styling
    8.7/10

To Me The Best EV in the market for the Price

By on Thursday, June 04, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 6,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Economical driving, comfortable, fun to drive,"

Cons: "Tele-metrics;"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

My Leaf

"When I shopped for an electric vehicle I considered the Volt, C-MaxEnergi, and the BMW I3. I ended up choosing the Leaf because I wanted a vehicle that was truly all electric. I could not afford a Tesla.... The Leaf ended up on top because of the quality of the ride; it is all electric; interior space for 5; excellent truck space; and value. The Volt was a close second. However, the Volt had only a 38 mile all electric driving range. I typically drive 40 - 60 miles per day. So the Volt fell short unless I charged at work. Also I felt like I sat down in the Volt vs. up in the Leaf. The Leaf can accept an occasional 3rd person in the rear seat. I could not be more pleased with my decision after having driven the vehicle for a year. I am typically seeing currently a range of 103 - 105 miles. During the winter with -5 to 20 degree temperature days I was realizing an 85 mile range... Quite good. The fit and finish is excellent. The navigation and hands free features are good. My only complaint is that when I sync my iPhone to the tele-metrics in the Leaf names are always stored last name first. So the call command always has to begin with the last name... The handling around winding roads as I drive home into the country is quite good. Acceleration is surprisingly good when "eco" is turned off. Regenerative braking is excellent... My commuting distance is 16 miles each way... I typically recovering about 4 miles on my commute... IE my range left shows only 12 miles being consumes... And this is in both directions.... I should add that I do typically avoid the highway going home... At 65 mph you do pay a penalty on range... For me the back roads and the highway take about the same time so I take the back roads.... I might add that I own a second vehicle so extended range is not an issue for me. I strictly use the Leaf for daily driving to and from work plus weekend errands... IF I was limited to one vehicle I would have certainly picked the VOLT."

5 people out of 13 found this review helpful

My Leaf

best vehicle I've ever owned except for one thing

By on Monday, June 01, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 15,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Great quality, safety, really smooth ride"

Cons: "Unbearable cabin pressure with rear windows open"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"This car is the best vehicle I've ever owned with two exceptions. First, the obvious limited driving range which I knew about going in. The second is very disconcerting. You cannot drive over 35-40 mph with just the rear windows open. The noise and extreme cabin pressure is literally unbearable. It is like sitting under a fully rev'd helicopter. You cannot believe the pressure. If you open the front windows, it goes way. I think it may be coming from the wheels but I really don't know for sure. I tried to tell this to the local Nissan dealer, but they just didn't want to hear it or they knew about it already and didn't want to admit it. If you buy a Nissan Leaf, take it for a ride over 40mph with just rear windows open. Good luck with that..."

2 people out of 9 found this review helpful

My second LEAF and LOVE it!

By on Wednesday, April 22, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 1,200

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Quiet, fun, Economical"

Cons: "range could be better"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I bought a 2015 SL after leasing a 2013 SV. In 2 years I put 30,000 miles on my last LEAF. I had absolutely NO maintenance issues with the car. It has more features than other cars its size. It is fun to drive. You have to come into it knowing what you are getting. I routinely go 80 miles in mixed driving without a problem. My daily commute is 64 miles round trip and I never have a concern. Sure the range is lower in the winter and is a bit less with the heat or AC on, but hasn't even ben an issue with my commute, Nissan has reworked the battery chemistry since the first model came out in 2011 and there is much less battery degradation. I saw none in 2 years. To address that someone said the battery costs $12000, not true. A replacement is $6000 installed, but it is warrantied for 8 years/100,000 miles from a bad cell and for 5 years/60,000 to hold a capacity of at least 70%. I have seen so loss in 2 years so I am confident it this cars battery quality. Of course I know that range will eventually decrease but the value is outstanding. I installed a 220 charging station in my garage and it charges quickly. If it was completely run down, it would charge in 4 hours, but I rarely ever run it down, so charge times are less. There are also free charging station ALL OVER the Dallas area. A charging station can be had for $500 but then it is yours forever. But you may need to install a 220 outlet if you don't have one. Sometimes Nissan gives these stations away with the car. So I pay 2.5 cents/mile for electricity vs 15 in my pickup. Also there are plenty of incentives. $7500 federal rebate is still available. It is actually a credit. So if you pay that much in Federal Taxes, you WILL get that amount back (or off) your tax bill when you file the next year. If you only pay say $6000 in taxes, that is all you will get back. I also received $2500 Texas rebate which runs until June 2015 unless renewed. Several other state offer rebates as well. Add that to offers from Nissan, you can get this car cheap. It is what it is, a commuter car. Its not a Tesla and wasn't meant to be. But it does its job extremely well."

20 people out of 21 found this review helpful

very high quality, cheap to operate and maintain

By on Tuesday, April 14, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 15,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
Not Rated
Reliability
Not Rated
Quality
Not Rated
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "$ 0.02 per mile and very low maintenance"

Cons: "45 mile range on 80% charge"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"after 3.5 years of operation its cost $0.02 per mile for home charging. the quality, smoothness and noise are excellent. easy and fun to drive."

9 people out of 18 found this review helpful

Extremely Advanced Car - So Quiet and Quick Enough

By on Monday, March 02, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 11,500

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Quick, Quiet in a luxurious way, edgy, spacious"

Cons: "You can't plan over 60 miles on hot/cold day"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"If you drive a car in the city and want to park in tight spots, quickly accelerate from 0 - 30mph, require lots of trunk and head space, plus does not pollute or damage the lungs of your cycling, walking and running fellow humans then this is your car. We buy wind power and charge our car overnight with a 110v and only use the charging stations when going to Whole Foods or the Science Center."

7 people out of 14 found this review helpful

Fun to drive, and near zero maintenance

By on Tuesday, February 17, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 31,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "fun to drive, no gas cost"

Cons: "Satellite radio sounds tinny"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"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."

7 people out of 8 found this review helpful

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