Nissan quietly introduced the new base "S30" LEAF - with (as one might expect) a 30 kWh battery, 107 miles of range and DC fast charging...for $1,750 less than the 30 kWh SV trim level
What is the title of this article on LEAF sales? A new high? Can that be right?
For October, Nissan looked to build on September's mild sales success on its all-electric LEAF (which with 1,316 EVs sold during the month snapped a 20 month losing streak of year-over-year sales); and they did it!
Renault CEO Carlos Ghosn introduced the world to the new 41 kWh ZOE (300 km/186 mile real world range) in Paris on a Thursday, and then put it on sale to the public on the next Saturday...just saying
Nissan closed out October's books with 1,412 sales, which was up 14% from the 1,247 sold in October of 2015.
Naturally, as one might expect with only 2 months of gains so far in 2016, the year-to-date results are still nothing to write home about.
Through the first 10 months of the year, 10,650 LEAFs have now been sold, which is off 28.4% from the 14,868 moved through this point a year ago. We should note that at one point this number was as high as ~41% during the Summer.
And do we care? Is there a deeper meaning to read into the numbers for October, or for the numbers earlier this year? Nope, not at all.
Much like the wind-down of the first generation Chevrolet Volt for much of 2015, or the collapse of the original Prius Plug-In Hybrid sales in 2014, the Nissan sales we see today is part of a well-orchestrated "thinning of the inventory herd" before the LEAF gets a 'surprise' upgrade (well, surprise to those who don't follow the segment anyway).
Average inventory of current LEAF fell to its lowest level since the model was in short supply out of Japan in early 2013, now representing little more than 30 days worth of stock on average during the month.
Also of interest this month: With the 1,412 October sales added into the LEAF's all-time US totals, that mark crossed the 6-figure plateau with 100,241 deliveries - making it the second plug-in, and first all-electric vehicle in the US to pass the benchmark. The Chevrolet Volt passed 100k earlier this Summer, and now stands at 107,267 cars sold.
Nissan LEAF all-time sales by month (through September). Note September ended a 20-month year-over-year sales swoon for the company. October will be the first month the LEAF's market share of the US market rises.
As part of the early preparation for a new larger capacity LEAF, Nissan quietly removed the original 24 kWh/84 mile base trim level in October, while replacing it with the new "S30" model with a 30 kWh/107 mile battery.
At the same time, the starting price-point for the new 30 kWh model is now $1,750 cheaper (from $32,450+DST) than the former entry level SV edition. The "S30" also now includes 6.6 kW L2 charging (vs 3.3 kW in the original S), and DC fast charging (formerly an option).