Everything About The Nissan LEAF 30 kWh Trialed By Owners – Video

APR 2 2016 BY MARK KANE 61

Nissan encourages potential customers to buy the new 2016 LEAF, now equipped with a larger 30 kWh battery, by presenting feedback from owners from few countries in Europe.

Nissan LEAF and e-NV200 in France

Nissan LEAF and e-NV200 in France

The new 30 kWh enables 107 miles (172 km) of real world driving according to EPA (in Europe it’s rated for a very optimistic 155 miles or 250 km under NEDC).

All in all, even today the LEAF is a decent, inexpensive all-electric five-seater.  The car’s main roadblock to sales currently however is the coming threat from GM (Chevrolet Bolt EV) in 2017 and Tesla (Model 3) in 2018 – both offering approximately double the range for only slightly more money.

“Savings, daily usability, charging network, emissions and more, all reviewed by our owners at the first European test drive. Find out just how the Nissan LEAF 30 kWh ’s increased range that now goes up to 250 km gets it done on a journey through the south of France.”

We should note that the next generation LEAF (~Spring 2017) will be the vehicle competing with the aforementioned competition, however Nissan has its hands tied not being able to announce the specs on LEAF 2.0 due to ongoing sales of the current car.

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61 Comments on "Everything About The Nissan LEAF 30 kWh Trialed By Owners – Video"

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Spring 2017? Has anything been announced?

Has anyone heard what kind of maximum highway range you can achieve with the new (30 kWh) battery? Mostly level terrain, pleasant weather with no heat pump use? Say 65 mph. Can it go 80 miles between charges?
I figure at 35-45 mph around town, in good weather, it would exceed EPA ratings. 110-120 miles on a charge?

Any first hand experience?

First hand experience – I traded in my 2013 Leaf for a 2016 with the 30 KWh battery – I have driven a 48 mile one way – which is about 40 highway miles at 65 MPH on I25 in Colorado with a fair amount of elevation change – this particular segment has a net 700 foot elevation gain – started from 100% and ended at 50% charge remaining. That was in 40 degree F with heat pump on and 2 adults and 2 kids in the car. The extra battery does make a big difference over the 24 KWh Leafs. I have also done a 39 mile drive to the airport in snowy 25 F weather conditions mostly averaging 40 MPH, parked the car unplugged for 10 days, then returning and driving directly home – about 40 miles return distance almost all at 64 MPH and 35 degree F – again 2 adults + 2 kids this time with a couple of filled suitcases from a trip. Heat on both ways, net elevation change is 0 since it is a round trip, total of 79 miles using 89% battery. With spring arriving and the weather getting nicer – I… Read more »

Thanks Tim for the detailed answers. I’m very impressed with your cold weather range experience. Also, it seems their is minimal or no self discharge for sitting unplugged for 10 days. This is all good news. Warmer weather should only increase range. Enjoy your upcoming roadtrips!

An 80-mile round-trip with a family of four (including a 10-day parking period) in freezing weather… in a car rated at 107 miles? You are a braver man than I, sir.

80miles should be doable even at that speed, especially if you can draft behind a truck. (pro-tip)

We (2 adults+2kids) recently drove 114km (72miles) from 80% charge over hilly terrain in a 2015 Leaf. Arrived at sub 5% SOC, drafted maybe 50% of the time and had a few km in slow traffic jam. I felt somewhat impressed. With extra 25% capacity and from full charge, shouldn’t be an issue.

Manbitesgas:Excellent! Appreciate all the data. There should be great deals on the 30kWh Leaf later in the year. I’m
sick of burning gas. As far as drafting and coasting, can you minimize regen in order to coast down gradual hills? What’s your tricks?

Drafting does increase range, but it’s both illegal and dangerous. Cars with automatic emergency braking (and much shorter reaction times than humans) will change this, but for now I’d rather stop for ten minutes at a charger if need be…

I took possession of a 2016 SV with the 30 kWh battery 3 weeks ago. The first day I put 85 miles of mostly 65 MPH driving on it and was showing 28% battery life remaining when I charged it. The range guage stated 30 more miles remaing. The chargepoimt EVSE reported 23.55 kw consumed. Mostly flat ground, 50 degrees F, using heated seat only, 1 person.

I need mooooore cowbell …than that!

Why wait until next year? They can upgrade the existing battery packs in the same cars right now no?
40 or 50 kWh would be fine to me.

Because the actual chemistry is lithium-ion and other form factor. The LG cells Nissan will produce next year a smaller and are lithium-polymer. Nissan have to change the whole factories and that costs money and time, they will start next months and it will also take a while.

Just to be clear, unlike the 24kWh the 30kWh does have a “lithium-polymer” battery.

No, the 30 kWh is li-ion but with a NMC cathode instead of a LMO-NCA cathode. NMC in the 30 kWh Leaf is much more durable, heat-resistant but also more expensive and bit more burn risky. Lithium-Ion they need much time in factoring to fill up the electrolyte, re cut open the cells after aging and laminate again. This step complex process falls away with lithium-polymer and makes them half the price like in Bolt and also Leaf 2.

A better mousetrap just came out (Tesla Model 3).. twice the range, AWD, autopilot, supercharging, way quicker acceleration, and way better aesthetics. Good luck with your antiquated Leaf there, Nissan. By the way, before anyone counters with the 2-3 year delivery for the Model 3, I will add that most patient, fiscally conservative folks (EV drivers) won’t mind waiting a bit longer for the “Kitchen Sink” vehicle… especially when you only have to wait once..

If Nissan comes out by mid-late-2017, worldwide, with a >150 mile BEV costing a good $5-10k less than the Model S, then it will have totally scooped Tesla.

Perhaps less so in the US, but surely in Europe, where it might be 2020 before tangible Model 3 deliveries begin.

Oops, I meant costing a good $5-10k less than the Model 3, not the Model S.

If my aunt had testicles she would be my uncle.

And my uncle would still not have access to the Supercharger Network.

Some education is in order, here:

1. She could still be your aunt. http://www.glaad.org/transgender/transfaq

2. We need all of them to succeed: Tesla, Nissan, GM, BYD, etc. So a stupid “Jets vs. Sharks” mentality is, well…. stupid.

I was just pointing out that Nissan has plenty of bandwidth in terms of time and market, for its Gen 2 Leaf to thrive. Of course, if they linger and stumble it won’t; likewise for the Model 3 – if it gets delayed by more than a few months with ~300k orders waiting, it won’t be good for Tesla at all.

I think that’s why they started the order process so early: to get a much-needed cash injection, and to light the fire under themselves.

I am not convinced that Nissan can come close to the Model 3 in terms of design aesthetic, and when you factor in the charging network, it’s no contest. M 3 can use SC, and with adapters the other DFCF networks. Leaf not so much. I have a Leaf, mind you.

How will Gen2 Leaf scoop Tesla?

I love my TWO Leafs but I’m going for a Tesla. Even a 150mile Leaf is mostly limited to max 75mile round trip journeys.

Only folks with a lot of time on their hands will stick their family in a BEV for a long distance journey and hope that the sole charging bay they’ll need is open, not-ICEd, not defective and doesn’t have a long queue.

That’s what my L3 charging experience has been like with the Leaf. One lousy bay….

Begrudgingly, sadly, I have to agree with all your L3 points. I’ve experienced them all.

Nissan, are you listening?

Perhaps for you 150 mile range isn’t enough. However, for many other people, that would be plenty. For Tesla, competing with big boys at low margin mass car market is a big risk. If they don’t succeed, it could spell end of Musk’s company. Regardless of who pitches pure EV, it will be hard sell to most people until gas price really spikes and stays there. Musk better pray that day will come soon.

Oh, don’t get me wrong. 150miles is plenty for 99% of my drives.

Still, I have to keep an ICE car for the occasional long road trips.

Now with the Tesla, I can consider dropping the ICE. With a Gen2 Leaf, the ICE will remain.

For long road trips, you can just rent an ICE car. Unbelievable as it may be, with unlimited miles in most rentals, I found it’s much cheaper to rent an ICE car for long trips than driving my own ICE car (for example 1000+ miles trip we did one weekend to LA). So EV + rental ICE is definitely a viable option for most people who mostly drive short distances daily.

In UK, when you buy or lease Nissan Leaf, you are getting access to ICE vehicle for up to two weeks per year, so no need to keep ICE vehicle. However I need to keep mine as I’m going abroad for 5-6000 miles return trip once or twice a year

A hard sell? C’mon, under what rock have you been dwelling for the past 3 days? 😉 Close to 300k reservations in the first 3 days. It flies off the shelves.

The Model S sells itself on its inherent qualities. And so does the Model 3. The cheap electricity is just a bonus.

Let me also add to my grind/disgust with Nissan- I own a 2012 Leaf and feel that early adopters like me have helped forward this electric snowball. Nissan’s early model Leafs re-sale is garbage, but I’m okay with that (or so I thought) because I figured as long as they’re making the Leaf in my body style I could always replace the battery in my worthless re-sale car with the latest range battery. NOPE. Nissan has ensured that I can only put the 1st generation range battery in my car. Thanks Nissan. Way to show appreciation for the early adopters who helped you have the number one selling EV.

Tesla, on the other hand, will let me buy a Model S with 60kWh battery and buy a 90kWh battery when it comes time for replacement. And oh yeah, they constantly update ALL their cars with the latest software updates for all the the cars with the supporting hardware. Because they don’t want their owners having to upgrade their entire cars that’s attached to a technology thats updating and improving practically weekly.

Bye bye Nissan..

Yes it seems dubious that Tesla still losing money selling $100K cars will sell $35K cars and make big profits. Nissan and other much larger car companies have Scale of operation to bring down the cost. What does Tesla have to make $35K car feasible? Moreover, Tesla has poor reliability and high repair cost (out of warrenty), and it’s an open question if they be able to improve for Model 3 remains to be seen.

The ‘poor’ reliability is mostly the early models. The later ones are much better, but it takes time to see that in the statistics.

I’m sure this has been pointed out numerous times before, and while risking to be number x hundred an one, I would like to point out that Tesla has a >20% gross margin on the S. That is way better than industry average. The reason they don’t make a profit is because they are still in start-up mode and expanding rapidly. Elon said it during the Model 3 reveal: Model S owners payed for the development of the Model 3. They will continue to lose money until after the Model 3 production ramp.

I don’t know where you get your figures from, but according to public earnings report, Tesla been burning billions of dollars, and losing $20K for every car sold. Tesla has to turn it around soon or it’s headed for bankruptcy 100% guaranteed.

In that case you either didnt read their financial report, or you dont understand numbers there….

That’s bulls**t. Also according to their public earning report. They make a handsome profit on each car. And yes it’s there in the figures. Those 20% is, however not enough to pay for the pretty massive investments being done in battery factories, research and development and supercharger building. All in all they need to get to about 100 k cars a year to begin to break even. They are on track to do this this year, 4 years ahead of schedule…..

deborah crazy train flower power


By the same logic you employ for Nissan delaying its Gen 2 announcement, Tesla shouldn’t have announced the Model 3 and opened up registration so early, because it will hurt Model S/X sales – sales which Tesla definitely needs, to provide cash flow for making the Model 3 a reality.

But announce they did, and now they have a quarter-billion $ in order money, to offset at least some of the potential Model S/X sales loss.

At some point you’ve simply got to jump. Ghosn et al. must become a bit less risk-averse.

It is a very real risk that it will affect the sales of at least the S as some people who would otherwise spring for an S think that the 3 is good enough. That might become a problem for Tesla that needs the S money to set up the 3 production line.

The X is a little more of a specialty vehicle, you buy the X because you want the SUV/many seats/falcon wing doors. I don’t think the X will suffer from the 3 reveal as much.


LEAF 2.0 will compete in the same exact price class as LEAF.

Model 3 will compete in two prices classes below Model S and Model X.

There will be some cannibalization but it will be minimal.

How come we do have mk2 leafs in UK and you don’t have them in US? Mk3 comes out in 2017.
In Europe, Leafs produced in or after 2014, classified as mk2.

What most people consider Leaf 2.0 is next -gen version with 60KWh battery.

Hurt? He already have commands for more than a year ahead for the S/X
Nissan (and GM) did it on purpose to affect sales because of the simple reason they are not yet committed in ditching the lucrative ICE cars. So they sabotaged both leaf and Volt sales. Marketing people are not stupid.

“Marketing people are not stupid.”

Generally speaking, they are *far* less intelligent than the people who design and engineer those cars. To wit: Gen 1 Chevy Volt.

As to Model S/X orders, orders can be retracted.

Besides, as this site itself reported, there is *no* waitlist for the S at the moment, at least in the US. Last month, people received theirs within a couple of weeks. Look up the March sales report post.

Now… If I really want to get me a Tesla, and I can afford a $70-100k car but it’s not peanuts for me – I will have been probably standing in line on Thursday, and will hold my Tesla cravings off for another ~2 years.

Why does Nissan need to ditch gasoline car to produce EV’s? They can do both fine. Nissan is the revolutionary in the mass EV market, with introduction of Leaf in 2010. Before leaf, there was no mass market EV available for average joe to buy. Same goes for Toyota, they don’t need to ditch gasoline car to produce successful hydrogen car either.

The big difference is that Tesla doesn’t have a car for the mass market. There is no Ohio Scientific effect for Tesla. However, the next gen Leaf does

Musk is also not stupid. Sure he will refresh Model S and X battery soon to 90 and 110 kWh to get distance between Model 3 and the higher priced. Interior and trunk also big difference. Model 3 many complained already the trunk metal opens only and interior looks poor.

Too expensive now. The 30 KWh MSRP in Canada is $37,398 Even with the better Ontario incentive it’s not going to be competitive with the model 3.

So the Bolt reveal started the ball rolling and Tesla piled it on even though their prototype doesn’t quite look ready.

I think Ghosn won’t have much of a choice but to pull the trigger on his own Leaf 2.0 reveal soon.
I also think that the model 3 effect isn’t just because it’s an EV. It’s because of the Tesla brand image with the model S and X.

Tesla Model 3 and the Bolt EV will hopefully force nissans hand. They seem to be holding themselves back and should put as much distance between the low KWh batteries as fast as they can.

Tesla brand image is mostly that of luxury sporty car for rich folks. If the appeal of Model 3 was really due to Tesla’s luxury branding, why would anyone want a cheapo version of Tesla which shows that they can’t afford a bonafide Model S? Generally, luxury brands can’t sell price competitive mass market goods based on that image. Tesla may be able to survive as a luxury car company, but to compete all out in mass market with much bigger car makers may invite huge losses.

Model 3 was announced 2 years before the Bolt. The Bolt is a reaction to M3, as the Volt was a reaction to the Roadster.

If they would have built and released the infinity ev like they kept saying the model 3 wouldn’t have been such a shock to the auto industry. Oh well, to the winner goes the spoils.

Sorry, that makes no sense at all. How is Chevy volt – a mass market hybrid(electric/gasoline) car a response to Tesla Roadster (a niche sports car for rich)?
It’s like saying new version of Toyoto Camry is in response to new model of Bugatti Veyron.

Depends on what you mean by “announced.”

If you mean that Elon Musk said we’re going to build an affordable family car with long range and it’ll be great, then the Model III/Model E/Bluestar was “announced” back in 2008. But such a standard is ridiculous.

If you mean when price, range, and an actual working prototype was shown, then the Model III was “announced” last week at the, uh, Model III announcement.

And Bob Lutz has stated many times that the Volt is a response to the Prius, not the Roadster. Lutz had considered proposing a high-end BEV Corvette-sibling as a response to the Roadster, but his lieutenants convinced him that making a Prius fighter was the better play.

Wonder if there is a business case for continuing the LEAF 1.0 sales in parallel with LEAF 2.0. Not everyone can afford 35K cars. The are many looking for a cheap second car runabout which LEAF 1.0 is ideal for that role, with little to no competition at that price point (current S model).

IMO Yes, I think there’s a business case and we’ll see it put in motion by this time next year.

I expect Nissan to keep the Nissan Leaf in production and continue with small incremental range increases. I expect them to continue pushing the price of the Leaf down to achieve a higher penetration in the lower price markets.

I expect the Nissan “Leaf 2.0” to be a completely different car model with a 200+ mile range.

If Nissan has much better battery available, it would be great if old versions of leaf can be retrofitted with it, increasing range to 150+ miles for just cost of battery upgrade. But would Nissan/Ghosen actually go so far to cater to people who own older leaf? It would possibly undercut sales of newer leaf models, but it would burnish Nissan’s image as progressive company.

I own a LEAF and just found a reliable online seller which is offering LEAFs at 25% discount (in Germany), also 30kWh http://www.apl24.de so it seems that Nissan is already selling off the present model cheaply because people are waiting on Generation 2 EVs

I have a model 3 reservation of course. Hope the Leaf will still be worth something to sell in two years, otherwise it will be kept as a third car.

One move that could help Nissan with the Sale of the Leaf is to make the model S a 30 kw car and increase the model SV and SL to 36-40kw for 2017 with the present prices for the 2016 models. The car needs a facelift because it is ugly. Maybe changing just the front nose could be enough.

If Nissan would commit to the production of increased kWh replacement batteries that would keep a lot of customers who could improve their current cars, instead of throwing them away for a higher range car. I do not want to get rid of my LEAF. I want to keep it, pay it off and eventually let my kids drive it until it can drive no more, then salvage the batteries for a home storage project. there has been no commitment from Nissan for this and now the model 3 has a lot of new future owners. Nissan needs to start thinking a lot more like tesla when it comes to EVs and start getting rid of the no can do people that have been slowing down their EV advancement. Waiting for Nissan to bring out a new amazing leaf has been like walking in mud for the last few years. Either I can buy a higher KWh replacement for my LEAF in a couple years or their will be a tesla in my driveway..Fact. A lot of new model 3 / ex LEAF owners will have a lot of freedom with their 214 mile range and supercharger access.

I would sure love a replacement battery of anything over 40 kWh for my 2014 Leaf. I too would like to keep the car for many years so my 7 and 4 year old kids learn to drive with it. I bought my Leaf hoping this would be the case, but given what we’ve seen with the new 30 kWh battery so far, I am no longer hopeful.

Number of gasoline cars sold per year world wide is 70+ million. How many years will it take Tesla to deliver those 300K Model 3? (remember Model 3 doesn’t start delivery until end of 2017). Total model 3 reservation is still just a drop in the bucket of gasoline car ocean.