Incentives sweeten price for all-electric Nissan Leaf

March 30, 2010 By Susan Carpenter
Nissan Leaf

The all-electric Nissan Leaf hatchback will cost $32,780 when it hits showrooms in December, the Japanese automaker said Tuesday.

But government subsidies will make the price more attractive.

There's a federal tax credit of $7,500 for .

And Californians are eligible for an additional $5,000 rebate through the state Air Resources Board.

That will take the base price for the standard Leaf, in California, to $20,280.

The Leaf's price will be far less than the only other currently available pure-electric car on the market, the $109,000 Tesla Roadster, which is a sport car.

Pricing for other upcoming -- including the , also due later this year -- hasn't been revealed.

To determine the Leaf's price, the company looked at other vehicles it felt customers would probably consider, including the gas-powered Honda Civic ($22,255) and hybrid ($25,830), said Trisha Jung, director of electric-vehicle marketing for Nissan North America.

"Price is important. It's one of the favorite questions we've gotten over the past few months," Jung said. "We know consumers care about that."

She said the company is positioning the Leaf as "the first affordable, mass-market, electric car" and that it's "a great opportunity for Nissan to bring in new customers."

But it will not be a loss leader, Jung said. Nissan expects to make a profit off the Leaf.

The car will be available in two versions -- a standard ST model and the more premium SL for an additional $940 that adds a backup camera and solar-panel spoiler to trickle-charge an accessory battery.

Both versions will be powered by a 24-kilowatt-hour, laminated pack that will allow the Leaf to travel 100 miles per charge and reach a top speed of 90 mph.

The ST and SL will each include three years of roadside assistance as well as a navigation system equipped with a real-time electric-vehicle locator that will be updated as charging stations are built throughout the nation.

Charging the Leaf to 80 percent of its capacity takes about 25 minutes, Jung said.

Nissan estimates the Leaf's five-year operating cost will be $1,800 versus $6,000 for a gas-powered car.

Those who choose to lease rather than buy the Leaf will also benefit from government incentives.

According to Nissan, the monthly lease on the car will be $349 but in California an Air Resources Board rebate will reduce it to less than $200.

About 85,000 individuals have registered on Nissan's U.S. Web site to receive updates about the product, the company said. Those on the list will be able to reserve a Leaf when Nissan launches its reservation system April 20.

The company hopes to have taken 20,000 reservations for the Leaf by December. Its current production capacity for the vehicle is 50,000 annually.

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Mar 30, 2010
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5 / 5 (2) Mar 30, 2010
Too bad GM couldn't make something like this.

Oh, they did. And then they crushed them all.
1 / 5 (2) Mar 31, 2010
how dumb can a car get.....burns more coal than a 1909 steam locomotive.
3.7 / 5 (3) Mar 31, 2010
In many states electricity is deregulated and you can purchase electricity from wind farm if you like. In texas for example the price of renewable plan not much higher than regular utility. I just checked here:

To compare apples to apples, lets compare fixed rate
plans. By Gexa energy for example, 100% renewable, 9.4c/Wh, same company normal fixed rate plan - 8.9c/Wh.
Not a terrible difference. There is planty of companies
who charge more for non-renewable than Gexa charges for
2.1 / 5 (7) Mar 31, 2010
How CLEVER can a car get!! a Car that barely needs maintenence. Is quiet and has low part count.
What can i say... AWESOME! GO GO GO Leaf..... :)
1 / 5 (2) Apr 01, 2010
This is a foolish car, and people that look forward to it haven't used their analytical talents.

Compare the Leaf vs. Volt

Leaf has lots of convenience and reliability issues, starting with range and going to recharge times.

Volt will be more convenient and reliable than an ICE with no range worry, no weather worry, no heater running concern, no AC worry. You won't run out of electricity and have to wait hours to charge, you can get gas and keep on going, just like always.

The Leaf uses subsantially more battery material, you could almost make two Volts for the same material. 86% + 86% will always be more than 100%.

We don't know the life of the battery, so I'll stay away from conjecture, but I think that the Volt made 10 yr life a focus, so I expect them to have a longer life.

The miniscule gas this will save over the Volt is nothing, and will be made up for the most part by the use of a 2nd car by Leaf users.

Nothing about the Leaf compares well to the Volt.
1.7 / 5 (6) Apr 01, 2010
There is a first for everything,you would not have driven the car you drive today if it was not for the pioneers who invented the first car.

The Volt is not 100% electric so not comparing apples with apples.

The leaf is a brilliant concept, an excellent starting point, it will only get better from there onwards as the cars get used,tested and all the bugs get worked out over time just as was the case with ice's when first created.So yes obviously there will be issues such as battery life,range charge time etc. using the materials they use is quite the opposite off foolish, its brilliant and it's called evolution, it's revolutionising how we commute, it is at the start of evolving.

And they are still trying to evolve ice's after more than 100 years.Fortunatelly they're time is limited and electrics will take over, not very soon but no one can and will prevent it! Can't wait for the leaf's release! And No you don't charge a day,just a mere 25 min, For a first generation bat
1.7 / 5 (6) Apr 01, 2010
Spelling corrections: "At the starting point of it's evolution and 25 min charge for a first generation battery" Be it to 80% capacity in 25 minutes it is still good.
1.7 / 5 (6) Apr 01, 2010
O and i did not mention, the very first electric car motor will probably be 100% reliable. Compare THAT with a first generation ice. ;)
1 / 5 (1) Apr 05, 2010

Leaf has lots of convenience and reliability issues, starting with range and going to recharge times.

Volt will be more convenient and reliable than an ICE with no range worry, no weather worry, no heater running concern, no AC worry. You won't run out of electricity and have to wait hours to charge, you can get gas and keep on going, just like always.

You are missing the largest point - Volt has two (!) independent power trains - electric and gasoline,
while Lief has one. Gasoline engine does not come cheap,
it costs more than electric motors and battery combined!
That is why Leaf can be sold for $25k while estimated price of Volt is $40k. This difference is not something that can be "improved" or "optimized away". It is fundamental.
For a very rare drive above 100 miles, which does not ever have to happen for a family with 2 cars living
in a city, you have to pay 1/3 more, and carry around
a weight of gasoline engine which will almost never be used.

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