Nissan Adds LEAF to Certified Pre-Owned Vehicle Program

SEP 12 2013 BY STAFF 15

We were going to post all sorts of journalistic magic here, but in the end we decided not to.

Fancy a Used LEAF?

Fancy a Used LEAF?

What changed our minds?

The answer is simple.  If you’re in the market for a used electric vehicle, more specifically a “Certified Pre-Owned” electric, then the details on warranty coverage, battery capacity guarantees and additional benefits are all that should really matter.

So, without further adieu, we present Nissan’s press release on the LEAF entering the automaker’s “Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles” program:

Nissan Plugs Electric LEAF Into Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles Program

Nissan offers additional confidence for pre-owned LEAF buyers

As demand for electric cars continues to grow among U.S. consumers, Nissan is adding the all-electric LEAF to its Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles program. Beginning in September, Certified Pre-Owned Nissan LEAF vehicles will be backed by the company to provide years of quality and performance at a great value.

In addition to the existing 8-year/100,000 mile* battery warranty coverage protecting against defects in materials and workmanship, and 5 year/60,000 mile* coverage for battery capacity loss below 9 bars of capacity as shown by the vehicle’s battery capacity level gauge, Nissan will extend the EV system and powertrain warranty coverage to 7 years or 100,000 miles*.  


Erik Gottfried, director of Electric Vehicle Sales and Marketing for Nissan said: “As more Nissan LEAF vehicles enter the used car market, we know it’s important for Nissan to provide the second owners the same confidence in the car that the original owner enjoyed. Adding LEAF to the Nissan Certified Pre-Owned program is a natural next step to strengthen the position of LEAF as the world’s No. 1 all-electric car for the mass market.”


Other benefits offered with Nissan Certified Pre-Owned vehicles include:


  • Comprehensive quality assurance vehicle inspection
  • CARFAX® Vehicle History Report with 90-day CARFAX Buyback Guarantee ®
  • 24-hour emergency roadside assistance
  • A no-cost, three-month subscription to Sirius-XM Satellite Radio
  • Car rental reimbursement
  • Trip interruption coverage


To qualify for the CPO program, a Nissan LEAF must have less than 60,000 miles, be less than 5 years from its original in-service date, have a clear CARFAX vehicle history report and pass a 167-point comprehensive quality inspection.  The vehicle must also have a minimum of 9 bars of battery capacity, out of 12 total, as represented on the vehicle battery capacity level gauge. 

At the beginning of the program, Nissan will offer special finance rates as low as 0.9 percent for 36 months on certified pre-owned LEAF vehicles through Nissan Motor Acceptance Corp.

Categories: Nissan


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15 Comments on "Nissan Adds LEAF to Certified Pre-Owned Vehicle Program"

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How do leases work, especially Nissan’s with unrealistically high residual? Does this make it any easier to, or have any affect on, buying your car at the end of the lease?

I’m interested to see what Nissan offers these cars for. My Leaf is already worth less than the residual according to KBB and NADA, and I have about 20 months left on my lease! Will Nissan take the loss and sell for less than residual? Will this turn around and make them lower the residual on new leases? The latter would prevent them from offering the great lease deals they have today. The next few years could either be rocky for the Leaf, or could show Nissan’s commitment to its success.

I was at Campbell-Nelson (one of the largest Nissan dealerships in the Seattle area) for my 1-year service, and out of curiosity asked the salesman about their experience selling those returned-lease 2011 Leaf.

He said he’d just sold one the previous (Labor Day) weekend, $18k cash to a guy who doesn’t believe in leases. The car had 20k miles with all 12 bars. I don’t know if it was formally a “cert pre-owned”, but dealerships will probably be able to get a $2-3k premium over the owner-seller market – for the good reasons Jay and others cite below.

btw, it then turned out that the salesman himself is an extremely enthusiastic owner of a 2013 Leaf himself! After getting teased by the 2011-12, the improvements in the 2013 did it for him. He told me that over the Labor Day weekend, he had a couple come in looking for a VW Jetta (it’s a dual dealership), he got them to test-drive the Leaf – and they ended up buying 2 Leafs the next day…

“Certified” used cars are a scam. I know for a fact that these 100-some-odd point inspections are never done. Some dealers just mark them as certified without doing the inspection, other dealers send a technician to do the inspection that should take several hours but only pay them half-an-hour of wages so the technician checks a few things and calls it good. In the end, the consumer is better off learning how to pick out a good used car and ignoring any gimmicks like this.

I think for the most part I agree with you David. But with the LEAF (or any electric car for that matter) buying used with the original OEM, with an extended warranty as part of the package does bring a lot more comfort over finding a private sale, and the risk that implies.

Other side of the coin is that you are going to save money. Other side of that coin (its a three sided one…leave me alone-lol) is that if you are buying privating and borrowing the money you are not going to get .9% so you might save the difference back via the interest rate.

IDK…its an interesting proposition I guess

I agree David. I was a private seller only, vehicle purchaser (before the buying the LEAF new). I would shop for clean 1.5 – 2 year old sports cars with brutal depreciation.

But with the limited track record of the drivetrain, I would go for any extended OEM warranty coverage I could get. I would still lean towards just leasing a new one, as you can take full benefit of the federal incentives.

I may go back to my ways if Model S resale values will cooperate by next summer.

These Nissan Leafs still get a really hefty price used on ebay in that lately I’ve seen the bidding take these cars up to $15,000 most of the time used. And any other EV with a working set of batteries even some of the 12 year old Toyota EV4’s still get a good chunk of chain.

“In addition to the existing 8-year/100,000 mile* battery warranty coverage protecting against defects in materials and workmanship, and 5 year/60,000 mile* coverage for battery capacity loss below 9 bars of capacity as shown by the vehicle’s battery capacity level gauge, Nissan will extend the EV system and powertrain warranty coverage to 7 years or 100,000 miles*” I see Nissan was very careful to note that they are NOT going to offer any additional coverage for the battery capacity loss beyond the 60k mile capacity loss warranty with 9 out of 12 bar max capacity. Using more generic terms like “EV system” and “powertrain”. Nissan also did not mention their $100/mo battery rental program that will be needed as the battery capacity starts to deteriorate even more after the 60k miles. This battery rental program is what Nissan considers their ‘long term revenue stream’. Which means the sucker who buys a used Leaf will get screwed. Not only will they be asked to buy the ‘Certified’ Leaf as if all is well with the battery, when it does drop capacity beyond 9 bars after 60k miles, and to the point of needing a replacement, the new owner is now on the… Read more »


You really think Nissan put all those billions of $ into the Leaf R&D, just to have the entire brand trashed within a few years as a “use it and dump it”?

Hold your water. Just like the doomsday scenarios about batteries dying out in a couple of years have not panned out, so will the entire used EV story be far better than what the naysayers wish for.

As a case in point, if you get a used 2011 Leaf for $15-20k now, pay cash, and drive some 1000 miles a month – you will be saving $2,000-3,000 *every year* just on gas. And chances are you’ll be saving on maintenance too.

Personally, I would rather lease a 2013 than pay cash for a 2011, but other people don’t like leasing. For them, if they dig what an EV is – a 2011 Leaf is a steal.

oh, and btw: if the company guarantees 9 bars after 60k miles, it means they’re pretty confident that the vast majority of Leafs will be doing far better than that. That’s sort of “Warranty 101” material – but EV-naysayers seem to struggle with understanding basic information, so I’m not surprised you haven’t figured that out.

If they fully test the battery packs, replace weak cells, and then provide a warranty for the battery pack, this could be a HUGE HELP to the EV market because worn out batteries are going to be a big worry for people buying used EVs.

Why would anybody buy a used leaf if they can get one for $199 a month????

Some people will just never lease. I’ve spoken with quite a few, rather intelligent people, and I couldn’t get past their anti-lease mindset. For many, leases are a scam – which is arguably a plausible idea about ICE leases. They fail to realize that EVs are a different turf, at least as long as makers can net the Federal subsidy with each lease, and as long as the tech is still improving too rapidly for buyers to take the risk of resale value loss on a brand-new EV. Other just prefer the feeling that they own the car. Still others look at the risk from a broader perspective: yes, with a lease you don’t pay the full price up front, but you’re still on the hook for ~$30k if you do something bad to the car (a crash is obviously insured, but other stuff might happen). A used 2011 Leaf for $15k or even $18k and ~20k miles on the odometer is actually an amazing deal. You’ve got at least 40k miles guaranteed driving on it – that’s about 1500-2500 gallons of gas, if you had bought some plain-vanilla used ICE car instead. You’re getting half your money back, just… Read more »

Many people can’t qualify for the lease!

I’m intensely curious how EVs in general will work as the initial wave of them comes off lease.

I strongly suspect that by the time my Leaf lease ends (3/2015) Nissan will have some kind of incentives to get people like me to either buy the vehicle or extend the lease. If I’m as happy at lease end with my car as I am now, I would definitely consider it, especially in light of whatever the features and cost of the Leaf 2.0 are.

We’re still breaking new ground with this whole mass market EV thing, and I suspect there will be some surprises for consumers as well as brilliant moves and stunning errors by car makers.


An interesting question. I wouldn’t be surprised though if Nissan won’t ever have to worry about any such incentives, b/c the used market will be doing just fine.

Think about it: they already got ~$10k in cash on the first lease (your down payment + Federal tax credit), plus your monthly payments of several grand.

Now they can net $15-20k from the 2nd-hand market. Why worry about trying to resell it to the lessees, when it is a far better – and easier – deal for them to lease you the next model?