TheNissan Leaf may be a hot item these days but Nissan is trying to keep expectations at a minimum knowing that profit for the model will only begin to squeeze in somewhere around the third year - and that’s on the assumption that it maintains a healthy sales diet in that time frame.

According to Brian Carolin, Nissan’s U.S. sales and marketing head, "Over the course of the vehicle life, it is profitable – in year three." The long wait for profit for the Leaf really comes as no surprise to a lot of us, especially given that the car - apparently, it comes with a battery that costs $18,000 - isn’t exactly light on the pockets. Overall, the Leaf will come with a price tag of somewhere in the neighborhood of $33,000 and is likewise eligible for a $7,500 federal tax credit.

So, now that we know how long it’s going to take Nissan to climb back into the black, we’re a little more apprehensive to say that the Leaf will be a cash-cow for Nissan. Three years, if you haven’t checked yet, is a pretty long time.


Source: Wall Street Journal

Kirby Garlitos
Automotive Aftermarket Expert -
Kirby’s first exposure into the world of automobiles happened when he caught Knight Rider on television as a five-year old boy. David Hasselhoff didn’t leave much of an impression on him (that happened later on in Baywatch), but KITT certainly did. To this day, Kirby remains convinced that he will one day own a car with the same ‘spirit’ as the original KITT (not the 2008 monstrosity). He doesn't know when that will be, but until then, he’s committed to expressing his love for KITT, and all cars for that matter, here at TopSpeed.  Read More
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  (238) posted on 05.26.2010

You have a good point. I guess we’ll see how the sales go. I still think it will sell well.

  (868) posted on 05.25.2010

Realize that the 100 miles is a maximum, just like the Tesla Roadster’s 250; for many Americans, the 70 or 80 miles between charges that you could realistically expect from the Leaf would simply not be sufficient for a day’s work. Being positioned as an economy car, this is particularly crippling for its potential sales because the majority or economy car buyers are such because that’s what they can afford. As a significant number of buyers to whom this vehicle appeals can only afford one car, what the Leaf’s range effectively does is prevent them from ever going on a long drive, which is too important a thing. I mean, you couldn’t even drive from LA to San Diego in this car, which is shorter than the drives that most people will at least once take. This car should succeed well in Japan where everything is close together, but it simply isn’t suited for export to America. Nissan would have been better off with a hybrid Versa or something as far as US sales are concerned.

  (238) posted on 05.25.2010

In no way will the Leaf flop. Its a commuter car. Not a vacation car to drive from Florida to NY. People will use it to go shopping, go to work, or any other odd jobs. America isn’t entirely made of points of interest 100 miles away or longer.

  (868) posted on 05.25.2010

The problem with the Leaf is that it can go only a maximum of 100 miles on a charge. That’s fine and probably more than you’ll need in Japan where things are close together, but I think that this car will flop in America.

  (815) posted on 05.24.2010

Oh dang leaf really sells well on the market.

  (765) posted on 05.20.2010

Well, For sure this would sell on Japanese market.

  (858) posted on 05.20.2010

Am not sure that previously believed that Nissan would potentially be selling the upcoming Leaf electric vehicle at a loss.

  (367) posted on 05.19.2010

This is a sneak attack by nissan to other electric cars. What pretty nasty move by nissan. They are the first one who releases an electric car.

  (347) posted on 05.18.2010

Nissan has already pefected the leaf but the battery is quite expensive,right? $18,000? the same value of brand new Mazda 3.

  (238) posted on 05.18.2010

I’m pretty sure people know how long three years are, unless they live in a cave, and I think the Leaf sales will continue strong and push a good profit coming out of the third year, granted there are no problems or malfunctions. I believe the car the car will be the top of its class.

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