Pros - Quite
- Fun to drive
- Oil Independence
- Low fuel cost
- Almost no maintenance
Cons Need second car for longer trips, lack of fast chargers, rebate savings not immediate
Summary The Leaf has become the go to car. It's the nicest car in the garage with the most features and is the most fun to drive. Green light and around town performance is very good. Zero to 60 is about 10 seconds and there is plenty of speed for freeway driving. Unlike gas vehicles there is no noise and no vibrations. Without the music on you can actually hear the engines of other cars. Fuel cost is very low, around $.03 per mile and maintenance after 7500 miles involves rotating the tires, the car practically takes car of itself. With the rebates the car cost was about $30,000 with tax and fees included. Nissan says the battery will last at least 8 years and the technology will be better by then. It will be cheaper to buy a new battery then a new car, and the fuel and low maintenance savings will likely cover more then the new battery cost. Fast chargers will also help extend the 70-100 mile range.
Pros No gasoline, oil, or coolant consumption, ever. Oil still used for tires and wiper blades, but oh well.
Extreme mechanical simplicity and therefore, hopefully, reliability to match.
The battery - the component most limiting to the car's overall utility
Cons Well, the limited range, obviously, as well as the admonitions against too-frequent use of L3 chargers.
No active temperature regulation for the battery pack like the Chevy Volt, Tesla, or Ford Fusion Electric designs use.
Summary My commute is only 22 miles each day, so I can't realistically expect that the reduced operating costs (two cents a mile, vs. about twenty for my old ICE car, plus oilchanges and maintenance) will offset the premium I paid for the LEAF. But if your commute comes closer to the 60 mile comfortable roundtrip range (assuming the kinder-to-battery 80% recharge, and allowing for a little battery capacity loss), then take a serious look at the operating costs, 'cause a LEAF will come very close to being financially viable for you. If your commute is 30 to 60 miles each way, and your employer will make recharging available at their end, it's a clear winner (except for the question of why you'd want to spend so much of your time driving even as nice a car as the LEAF).
But there's also some value to the Leaf's much more pleasant driving experience. When my previous car (a '99 Eclipse GSX) just barely started after sitting idle for about a month, I realized I'm going to have to use it at least one or two days a month, if I'm going to keep it ready for long trips. When I took it out, I was AMAZED at the difference between it and the Leaf. The Eclipse always did kind of sound like its moving parts were made of sandstone, but I'd gotten used to it. After a month in the Leaf, though, going back to the Eclipse was a loud, smelly, hot, vibration-fest (OK, maybe not quite fair comparing cars of such different ages). Still, driving the Leaf is grin-inducing.
Maybe I'm still suffering from new-car euphoria; let's see how it goes over the next few months.
Pros With all the mod cons, this is a very nice car to drive. It is quick off the blocks, acceleration from between 0-40 is outstanding, above that is sub par but even so the response is immediate.
Ability to turn on A/C remotely via web or phone app prior to
Cons Very limited range. This is ONLY a commuter car, no touring in this car.
"NIce. Very Nice"on by sh0223
Pros Totally electric, it will take me years to learn all of the features. Very comfortable, both in the front and back. I've read reviews complaining about the rear seats. Extremely roomy as far as I'm concerned, and I weigh over 200 pounds. Drives like a
Cons Range about 75 to 100 miles on one charge, depending on conditions. Fine for me, because it's just for around town. Retired, not a daily commuter.
Summary Also have a solar array on the roof. While charging my Leaf with the 120 volt charger, my electric meter was still running backwards. How cool is that! ACTUALLY CHARGING MY CAR WITH THE SUN! This has been my dream since I was a kid.
It doesn't get any better than that. NO MORE OIL!!!!!!!!!!!
Pros Quiet and smooth ride.
Fun to drive.
Summary Finally a car manufacturers is bold enough to put the long awaited electric car into the hands of the masses. We're not talking about a test program or some local experiment. The LEAF is the real deal. Kudos to Nissan.
The LEAF is not perfect and it's not yet for everyone. But anybody who's willing to learn a new way to drive will be rewarded with all the benefits an electric ride has over a traditional gas car. The first obvious one is you'll never spend a dime on gas ever again. Of course your electricity bill will go up but trust me, electricity is WAY cheaper than gas, even when gas used to be $2 a gallon (keep dreaming). If that's not enough to convince you, think that electric doesn't require oil change, doesn't have countless filters, doesn't need injector cleaning nor timing belt and water pump replacement, has no transmission and not tail pipe to do the smog test.
On top of that the LEAF accelerates and corners like a sports car. It's really fun to drive. I know some people will miss the loud noise of the gas engine but the hissing sound of the DC converter reminds me of a spaceship from a Star Wars movie. Take a ride to the future. Get a LEAF.
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