Sales of Nissan LEAF in Japan have been oscillating around the level of 700 units a month thus far in 2013.

2013 Nissan LEAF

2013 Nissan LEAF

In May, LEAF sales were 708 units.  Unfortunately, that's less than half the units sold in May 2012.

This result is much weaker than expected after the launch of the upgraded version of the LEAF.

Meanwhile, the number of LEAFs sold YTD is 4,641, which is a far bit lower than the 5,102 in the first 5 months of 2012, and lower than two years ago when Nissan delivered 5,050 units through the end of May 2011, despite the powerful tsunami that Spring.

The relatively high sales of LEAF in the US means that the United States is by far the largest market for electric Nissans. At the end of May, Japan had been overtaken in terms of cumulative sales by over 1,000 units (26,085 in Japan vs. 27,126 in the US).

Despite the weaker performance in Japan, the monthly sales level of the LEAF is now the highest in its history.

The only downside is that the launch of production in the US and the UK means that production in Japan has probably declined by more than half compared to last year.