Nissan LEAF Sales in Atlanta – Nearly 1,000 Units Sold in December

3 years ago by Eric Loveday 54

2013 Nissan LEAF

2013 Nissan LEAF

In reporting December 2013 sales figures, Nissan posted this:

Nissan LEAF

Nissan LEAF

One Nissan LEAF city (US) gained almost 1,000 new LEAF owners in December.

Can you name that city?

To which the automaker later followed up with this:

The answer to today’s question is… Atlanta.

Now that’s a shocker.

Total US sales for the LEAF in December 2013 were 2,529 units.

Nissan doesn’t provide a specific figures for LEAF sales in Atlanta.  Instead, the automaker says “almost 1,000,” which we have to assume means over 900 units.  So, let’s say that sales in Atlanta were between 901 and 999.  That means that more than one-third of all the LEAFs sold in the US in December were sold in one US city – Atlanta.

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54 responses to "Nissan LEAF Sales in Atlanta – Nearly 1,000 Units Sold in December"

  1. Ocean Railroader says:

    What is happening is the leaf has reached a density point in population where it’s causing a chain reaction for demand. What this means is that there are enough leafs in this area area that lots of car shoppers are are able to see them in daily life operating on the highways and sitting in the local store parking lots which makes them want to buy one. The people in this area also must have reached a point where at least someone knows someone who drives one and is able to explain how it works so there are a lot less EV myths out there which could feed demand.

    If this one city can demand this many leafs then it’s very possible for demand to easily go past 4000 in a mater of months. If Nissan is able to get two or three more cities and their suburbs to do this.

    1. Mark Hovis says:

      That has an effect but the credits that Georgia is offering certainly proves that you don’t have to be a CARB ZEV state to make it happen. Great news!

      1. Ocean Railroader says:

        It also makes me wounder will happen when the cheaper i-Mev comes into play in May.

        1. offib says:

          I wonder too, but there’ll be issues with exposure or awareness that the LEAF is experiencing in Atlanta. It’s a Mitsubishi in the first place and that itself limits awareness. Still, I’d imagine the i-MiEV will do very well in Washington, Oregon and Normal, Illinois especially. The latter could be the LEAF’s Atlanta equivalent. There’s also the limitation of production. Batteries for the little kei car (kept seperate from the Outlander) won’t begin production until April, when it’ll officially arrive. So initial sales and rollout would be typically slow. If it does generate great demand (from 100 – 300 to over 1000 per month), it may be the same year long story of Nissan’s battery supply constraints.

          It’ll be exciting how the i-MiEV will behave since the majority of customers would be businesses, state governments and what else who own fleets and the other being younger buyers who walked in and see the inexpensive Mirage. We’ll just have to wait and see.

      2. Dave R says:

        Yep, it’s the incentives that one can get in GA. $5k back from the state coupled with a $200/mo 2-year lease = basically free driving.

        If the LEAF works for your lifestyle, it’s a no-brainer.

        1. Mike says:

          March 2014: Got mine for $284 per month. $100 fees.

    2. Dr. Kenneth Noisewater says:

      Blacked-out NISMO Leaf with more power please!

  2. Mark says:

    I’m a Volt owner and I live in Atlanta. I’m on the lookout for other electric cars, and I am amazed at all the Leafs I’ve seen in Atlanta. On my relatively short outings (20 miles and less), I’ve had as many as 5 Leaf sightings in one day.

    1. Ocean Railroader says:

      We have had only one pure Ev sighting in my area and that was a Black Tesla Model S and a sliver Tesla Model S. I did once see one Nissan leaf driving but I learned it was owned by a car dealership.

      This Saturday was the first time I saw a volt in the local parking lot where I work other then that the Volt is a very rare car in my area.

      1. pjwood says:

        I was at a Chevy dealer, in ME, whose 3-car showroom had 3 Cameros last weekend. 4 guys doing nothing, “the Cameros don’t move easy in snow”.

        –How to sell cars.

  3. ModernMarvelFan says:

    Why is that surprising?

    I am willing to bet that 95% of that “sales” were leasing deals.

    For $199/month and GA State put up another $5K for you to do it. That is FREE CAR for 2 years out of the 3 years lease.

    If FREE CAR doesn’t move LEAF in Atlanta, then NOTHING else will.

    1. Spec9 says:

      Exactly. It is amazing that it isn’t selling even better. But a lot of people don’t know about the deal and a lot of people think electric cars are just golf carts . . . get “real” car.

      1. Assaf says:

        There’s still the down payment. On the typical 3-year Leaf leases this is $2k down or so.

        Also, the most popular trim is S+charge, which is $2.2k down and $219/month for 3 years if I’m not mistaken.

        More like free car for a year, not 2… which is still great, of course. No one paid me back my $4.6k down (and 99/month since then).

        1. ModernMarvelFan says:

          Geez… What more do you want? A Completely FREE CAR?

          Combined with HOV access in the land of traffic jam (AKA Atlanta Suburbs), that is about as good as what Norway is giving the EV drivers…

          Like I said, if that is NOT enough, then NOTHING else is to move the LEAF off the lot….

      2. kdawg says:

        It’s sort of like the hypothetical question I’ve asked before: If you offered people free EV’s, that they were not allowed to resell, and they would have to insure/register them, charge them, etc; how many people would still not take one? I bet there would still be quite a few people who wouldn’t take one; a situation where you can’t give a “free” car away, LOL.

        It all goes back to people always saying EV’s don’t sell because they are too expensive. That surely is a piece of the pie, but definitely not the only piece.

      3. ModernMarvelFan says:

        I am pretty sure anyone who is on the “fence” is taking the leap already…

    2. Add in savings from not having to pay for gas, and there’s a few more months of gas-‘free’ driving! 🙂

    3. RedLeafBlueLeaf says:

      And that’s why Colorado, which offers over $5100 for purchases of the LEAF in tax credits, doesn’t have the same increase in sales. The Colorado credit is closer to $1k for leases.

      1. ModernMarvelFan says:

        Another bonus in GA state credit is “carry over” feature. So if you don’t make enough to qualify for it in 1 year, you can carry it over forward to the future. Not all other State credits are as forgiving as the GA state credit.

        1. RedLeafBlueLeaf says:

          Actually, Colorado is excellent in this area – you get all of the credit the same year, even if it means they pay you because you didn’t have enough state taxes.

          1. ModernMarvelFan says:

            Then it is no different from CA incentive, income “independent”…

            Why bother with the tax system then? Just hand it out.

    4. Mike says:

      2 year lease

  4. Spec9 says:

    People getting one at the end of the year to take advantage of the extremely generous GA tax-credit.

    1. one of them says:


  5. Vik says:

    There is a simple reason why the leaf is so successful here in Atlanta and that is because of the $5,000 state credit that Georgia residents receive whether buying or leasing a ZEV. I in fact got a Ford Focus Electric because I am a poor collage kid and leasing the car with brings my monthly payment down to $60 per month (Less than gas if had bought an ICE car) after my parents took the $5,000 credit. In fact we heard about this credit from a friend who leased a leaf for 24 moths for $179 a month so in effect he gets all the money back because the total cost of the lease is less than $5,000. If it were not for Georgia’s generous credit I probably would have never bought an electric car let alone look into it.

    1. Foo says:

      Haha… I purchased my FFE with the idea that, in 3 to 5 years, a used FFE would probably sound really good to some college kid. In other words, I should have no problem selling it for whatever a used FFE is going for by then. I mean, no gas to buy, no maintenance to pay for, probably access to free charging on campus, etc. — a sweet low-cost ride for school! And with a 5-star safety rating, and a “self-limiting” range and speed (no crazy route trips possible, and the FFE tops out at about 85 mph), their parents would probably like it too, and perhaps help them buy it.

      1. Vik says:

        Exactly, my energy is all from campus which to me is like free, but I am pretty sure I pay for it some how through the large fees I pay to my University.

  6. Vik says:

    It sometimes annoys me at how many people have leafs, here in Atlanta, in fact if you go to north Fulton it is the most common car you see I mean even more common than a Fusion or Camry. Random Leaf owners tell me how great it is to drive an electric car while completely ignoring the fact that I have a Ford Focus Electric, I guess that is the cost of driving a good looking electric car opposed to the frog like looking Leaf.

    1. Vik says:

      By the way there is a trade off for the focus, for getting a better looking car with more power and liquid temperature controlled batteries which are so much better in winter and summer, you lose trunk space which the Leaf has plenty of. Actually though I don’t like the leafs looks I am still glad Electric cars over all are picking up in my area.

      1. Elroy says:

        My coworker had a new Focus. We raced 4x from a stop against my 2012 LEAF. I absolutely murdered him up to 40mph. He got rid of the Focus shortly after. Such a dog off the line.

        1. Elroy says:

          My coworker had a new Focus. We raced 4x from a stop against my 2012 LEAF. I absolutely murdered him up to 40mph. He got rid of the Focus shortly after. Such a dog off the line.

          Not to mention the LEAF will slowly walk away from the Focus top end too.

          1. ModernMarvelFan says:


            Pre 2013 LEAF is quick off the line in about 0-30mph. But between 30-60mph, the LEAF is a completely turtle… That is why it takes 10 seconds for LEAF to do a 0-60mph… Slow pig…

        2. Vik says:

          I don’t know what kind of of Focus he has, maybe an basic ICE focus, but I can assure you the pickup in the Focus Electric is much greater than that of a Leaf and that I am basing off how it feels to merge into speeding traffic as I actually drove a friends Leaf before I went and bought the Focus, plus most leaf owners that I let drive the Focus Electric agree with that but cite the lack of knowledge of the Focus’s existance for going with the leaf, also the trunk space scares some.

    2. Aaron says:

      @Vik: That’s the problem with the Focus Electric (and other conversions like the Fit EV and 500e) — it’s not so obvious that you’re driving an electric car. Sure, there are tiny badges around and the front fascia is different, but how many unwashed Walmarters can tell the difference?

      The LEAF is unique, for better or worse. Even the Prius didn’t sell well until the second generation. The first generation looked too much like a regular econobox. People couldn’t brag about their “green credentials” as easily as they could when the Prius got its unique shape.

      1. Vik says:

        I am quiet content with the Focus though it has everything that matters to me, like the liquid temperature maintenance system for the battery, more power and great features. If green street cred is something you want in a car I guess the leaf is good, but I like a pragmatic car, which is one of the reasons I went with the Focus.

  7. MichaelBly says:

    Lets not forget Atlanta means. City of Atlanta has crappy sales, the Metro Atlanta and particularly 3 dealerships have figured it out and are selling like crazy. $5000 helps, plus my custom formula on how to get the credit instantly helped one dealer make a lot of sales.

    Good Job Georgia!

    1. crashy says:

      changing number of dependends for state taxes is now a formula? next, we’ll see someone patenting it

    2. ModernMarvelFan says:

      The HOV access helps too…

  8. Al S says:

    Didn’t this state tax credit expire at the end of 2013?

    If so, a last second rush to take advantage of the credit was to be expected. After you add LEAF sales in other areas of Georgia, you’re left with relatively few being sold elsewhere in the country.

    I find this disappointing. By the way, I own a LEAF.

    1. Nate says:

      I don’t think it has expired unless these sites from the state of Georgia and Nissan are not right: Incentives

      With such extreme incentives you will have big numbers the last couple weeks of the year. I doubt they will sell 1000 in January (though would be happy to be proven wrong).

      If I lived in GA I would probably buy one as a third car. $12500 back in State and Federal credits, plus 10% off charging equipment, HOV access and a charging rate incentive. I wonder how long the cars need to be kept for. If it is only a year you could probably buy one and sell after a year to someone in Portland and it would work out very well for both parties. It should only cost $500 or so to ship coast to coast.

      1. Nate says:

        Yeah, I’m intrigued by these GA incentives and a possible win win here..

        I don’t see anything that requires you to keep the car for a specific period of time. I don’t see anything that limits you from getting the credit if you got it in a previous year. Am I mistaken?

        Seems like you may be able to sell private party to Portlanders, as the car is popular here but there are no state incentives on the sale price. Share your state $$$ by discounting the price, and go get yourself another Leaf?

        1. Al S says:

          Thanks for the info.

          If I were a Georgia resident, I wouldn’t be comfortable taking advantage of the incentive for the primary purpose of reselling out-of-state.

          However, if this were someone’s plan they might look to one of the Canadian provinces where there absolutely no government incentive in place. They would need to wait six months to avoid having the warranty canceled.

          1. Nate says:

            Yeah, you are right resale shouldn’t be your primary purpose. You never know though sometimes peoples needs change and they want different options, or they settled for a light blue one when they really wanted red or something. Or, (less likely) they just decide the Leaf isn’t for them.

  9. one of them says:

    I am one of those “1000” — and yes, the $5k and the cheap lease was the tipping point. I have been following the EV market for years and was just waiting for the right time. So far, 100% happy!!

  10. Aaron says:

    I wondered where all these LEAFs were being sold. I rarely see them around Dallas. Heck, I have seen three other i-MiEVs! Tons of Volts too.

    1. kdawg says:

      I have only seen 1 Leaf in the wild and that was over a year ago. I’m in Volt-land. I see more everyday.

    2. one of them says:

      U live in the land of OIL….tons here in ATL

    3. ModernMarvelFan says:

      Lots of them in the SF Bay Area….

      You can’t drive around without seeing LEAF, Volt, Tesla and Prius…. They are almost as popular as F-150, Silverado, Accord, Camry and Altimas…..

  11. kdawg says:

    So why isn’t the Leaf more popular in Denver, where the Colorado credit is $3000?

    1. RedLeafBlueLeaf says:

      See my comment above. The Colorado credit for purchases is “up to $6k”, which is a bit over $5100 for LEAFs. But that’s for purchases only – leases get a credit closer to $1k – under $1k for the cheapest model S.

      So, if you can afford to float the US and state government a $12,600 loan for up to a year until you get your tax refunds you can save a ton of money buying a LEAF in Colorado – but that up front cash outlay is certainly a discouraging factor.

  12. Mark C says:

    I get a chuckle out of the people who grumble about the limited state incentives. States that offer incentives are far outnumbered by states that do not. Be grateful if you can get the incentive.

    As for Colorado giving ~ $5100 credit on purchasing a Leaf and the up-to $7500 Federal credit, just buy the car instead of leasing it. I’d do it with Credit Union financing so I could easily refinance it as soon as the tax credits came in. By applying all of the credit, the monthly loan payments would go way down.

  13. ModernMarvelFan says:

    I wonder how all those incentives are going to impact the so called “used car values”. That is $12.5K off the $29K price the moment the car leaves the lot….

    1. RedLeafBlueLeaf says:

      Here in Colorado we see used car dealers asking $22k for used 2012s and I’ve seen up to $29k for a slightly used 2013. I guess they are hoping to get buyers who don’t know about the tax credits. And presumably they do get a few buyers at those prices because the tax credits aren’t well known to the general public.

      What this means for those of us who do know about the tax credits is that the new LEAFs are much better deals that used ones. The possible exception is if you import a used LEAF that you got at a great price from another state. If the used LEAF is registered in Colorado for the first time you can get a portion of the state tax credit on it.

      1. ModernMarvelFan says:

        Well, I doubt an used EV buyer would be that dumb….

        I guess those dealers would have to have those cars “sitting” for a long time on their lots….