2018 Nissan Leaf Review

Fuel Type
City MPG
Highway MPG
  • Performance
    3.8 of 5.0
  • Cost of Ownership
    4.6 of 5.0
  • Interior
    3.0 of 5.0
  • Reliability
    4.0 of 5.0
16 Sep 2017

The Nissan LEAF, the world’s most popular fully electric vehicle, will receive a redesign for 2018. A much-needed one, given that the affordable EV has faced stiff competition from the Chevrolet Bolt EV and the Tesla Model 3 EV. Both of these vehicles compete in the same affordable EV segment as the 2018 Nissan LEAF.

These other cars include cutting-edge designs, modern technology and safety features, and, most significantly, the largest electric range available in this price range. So there was no justification for Nissan to release a mediocre follow-up to their electric LEAF; they were obliged to refresh in every imaginable way.

We enjoy good competition and hope you will join us in discovering how much better the 2018 Nissan LEAF will be than its predecessor from 2011.

Exterior design

The car’s appearance is vastly altered from what it formerly was. New headlights and a more angular design refresh that part of the exterior attractively. The unusual frog eyes of the LEAF‘s predecessor appear to be a thing of the past.

The grille is then shaped more like other current Nissan vehicles, such as the Nissan Rogue, with a big V shape. The grille design, on the other hand, is a highly distinctive dark blue 3D crystal type, a first on any Nissan model. We anticipate that it will be limited to the LEAF in order to distinguish it from the basic gasoline and diesel models. The black insert behind the grille is dubious and adds no major visual value to the fascia.

Small, angular cut-outs in the modest bumper house the Daytime Running Lights. The car’s bonnet looks rather bulgy, a strong farewell to the LEAF‘s predecessor.

2018 Nissan LEAF side and rear

The LEAF‘s side confirms our hope that the previous LEAF‘s fairly frivolous design would not be repeated. The 2018 Nissan LEAF appears to be a normal hatchback, but it also appears to be considerably more roomy. The roof has a smooth tip, and the tail lights successfully compete with the side creases.

The nicest part about this sleek profile is that it is also considerably more aerodynamic than the previous LEAF, which is highly useful in an EV.

The car’s backside has also been toned down significantly. The vertical taillights have been replaced with boomerang-shaped units that wrap around to the side. The black outline of the rear window contrasts with the body color, unless it is likewise black. The lower bumper appears considerably more contemporary and sporty than the previous one, which is a huge step forward in terms of style.

Interior design

The 2011 LEAF‘s bubbly interior has also been dropped. The wavy-looking dashboard gave way to an unusually straight one, and the charming steering wheel was replaced with a sporty, solid unit with an abundance of buttons. The shifting button is similar, and the center stack has also been standardized. Overall, the cabin appears to be more quieter and better, but we believe that part of the LEAF‘s personality has been lost.

The center stack is neat and tidy, with a beautiful chrome outline on the infotainment screen. Another screen displaying driving statistics is located behind the steering wheel. The material finish on the chairs, panels, and dashboard appears to be of decent quality.

Electric motor specs

Nowadays, the battery and its range are the most essential aspects of an EV. Especially when there are two direct competitors with outstanding electric range by current standards.

Let’s get the specifics on the 2018 Nissan LEAF range out of the way straight away: it can travel 150 miles (240 kilometers) on a single charge. Although this is not as revolutionary as the Tesla Model 3’s 200-plus mile range, it is a 40 percent improvement over the current LEAF model.

Furthermore, the electric motor now has 147 horsepower, which is 40 more than the current LEAF, and the battery is 40 kWh, which is 10 kWh more than the previous LEAF. In comparison, the 2018 Chevrolet Bolt has a 60 kWh battery, while the 2018 Tesla Model 3 has a 50 kWh or 75 kWh battery.

Nissan noticed these differences as well, and they have already stated that the 2019 LEAF would be more powerful in all areas: battery, horsepower, and range. As a result, the 2019 Nissan LEAF will cost somewhat more than the 2018 Nissan LEAF.

Charging time with a 3 kW power socket is sixteen hours, while charging time with a 6 kW power socket is eight hours.

The e-Pedal technology, which is new in the 2018 Nissan LEAF, allows the driver to just use one pedal throughout the trip. The e-Pedal does its own calculations and can detect whether the driver intends to accelerate or brake and then acts appropriately. Of course, a regular braking pedal is there for drivers who are still wary of this technology.

Tech specs

The e-Pedal system is, by definition, cutting-edge technology, as it relies on software to determine what the driver intends when pressing the pedal. Aside from the e-Pedal, the 2018 Nissan LEAF includes an infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support. However, in order to access these services, the buyer must select a higher trim that includes a navigation system.

The ProPilot Assist is a driver assistance feature that, when used, automatically controls the car. This means that it can maintain a safe distance from the vehicle in front when driving at speeds ranging from 18 to 62 mph (29 to 100 kph), but it can also automatically steer to stay in the lane and brake when the vehicle in front slows. An intriguing feature that has the potential to improve traffic safety and reduce driver stress.

Price & sale date

Despite all of the innovative new features of the 2018 Nissan LEAF, the beginning price has been reduced somewhat, now starting at $29,990 for the LEAF S. The LEAF SV starts at $32,490, while the top trim level, the LEAF SL, starts at $36,200. Overall, these are reasonable prices, and the LEAF easily beats the Bolt and Model 3 in this area.

Different pricing are set in different countries around Europe. In Germany, the standard LEAF will start at €31,950. This implies, in terms of economics, that the 2018 Nissan LEAF will outperform the 2018 Opel Ampera-e and the 2018 Tesla Model 3 across the pond.

The 2018 Nissan LEAF will be available in the United States and Europe in early 2018. The car will be available in Japan for the first time in October of this year.