Family in Nissan LEAF

Family in Nissan LEAF

In its latest press release, Nissan encourages the switch to electric drive because it will pay off.

According to Nissan, fuel bills could be lowered by up to 60% compared to conventional vehicles.

"Families could carve as much as 60 percent off monthly fuel bills by making the switch to electric. This equates to a saving of €24† each month, for the average European family."

For the sake of comparison, Nissan is using the LEAF and Note 1.5dci.

"† Based on a Nissan Note 1.5dci costing €40.76 a month (€10.19 a week) versus €16.64 (€4.16 a week) in the LEAF; diesel prices correct as of 22/04/15 and calculated over an average distance of 208km per week travelled. Totals based on Nissan's Global Data Center (GDC) as of 30.09.2014 (UTC)."

It would be swell to save €24 each month, but we are not sure if this is fully honest to present financial comparisons without noting upfront costs.

For example, in Germany, the price of the Nissan Note 1.5dci stands at €16,340 (Visia trim) and goes up to €21,040 (Tekna trim), while the Nissan LEAF begins at €29,690 (Visia trim) and ends at €35,090 (Tekna trim).

Even if we assume best-case scenario and compare Note Tekna €21,040 with LEAF Visia €29,690, the difference is €8,650. Basing solely on the €24 savings each month, it would take 360 months or 30 years to make up the difference in upfront costs.

This is probably the reason why manufacturers are hiding some numbers here and there, which leaves us to believe that the LEAF still needs a couple of grants / incentives to be price competitive.

After deducting the tax credit or grants, that €24 savings each month is surely welcome.

"And it's easy to see why; one of the participants, Martin Brady from Dorridge, UK claimed to have saved €3,385 since adopting the Nissan LEAF as the family's primary mode of transport. He said: "I'd be surprised if it costs me much more than a fiver (£5) a week. I mainly charge at work."

As many as 89 percent of LEAF drivers charge overnight at home, benefiting from a cost per km of just three cents or less†. This leads to ample savings for the average family, money which is being redeemed against a wide range of items, from solar panels to home improvements‡.

Jarl Hovind from Oslo, Norway comments: "I don't spend more than NOK3 (39 cents) per 10km on charging the LEAF."

Commenting on the research, Jean-Pierre Diernaz, Director of Electric Vehicles for Nissan in Europe, said:

"As fuel prices continue to fluctuate right across Europe, there's one thing customers can be certain of - electric cars are incredibly economical."

"We've seen more and more drivers become disillusioned by the price of motoring in recent years, and this trend will continue unless more families make the switch to electric vehicles."