Nissan Hopes People Will Get Excited as it Starts to Tease Next-Gen Leaf
The plan is to take on the Model 3 and Chevy Bolt.by Robert Moore, on
So, here’s the deal. The Nissan Leaf was the world’s first mass production electric vehicle, and Nissan has sold more than 260,000 examples of that little hatchback, but let’s not beat around the bush – it’s electric range isn’t the best. After all, it just recently crossed the 100-mile mark when Nissan added in a 30 kWh battery pack for the 2017 model year. Those 107 miles, however, just aren’t enough, with models like the Ford focus Electric, Bolt EV, Hyundai Ioniq, and even the BMW i3 beating it in range. And, let’s not even talk about how badly the more expensive Model S and Model X put it to shame. But, Nissan has made it clear that all of that is about to change as it launches a new campaign to garner interest in the next-gen Leaf prior to its debut later this year.
To launch off its new advertising campaign, Nissan has released a single teaser image that depicts what is apparently the front headlights. The projectors themselves will be rectangular in shape while a long LED strip will reside above the lens. Outside of the image, Nissan has yet to release any other information pertaining to the next-gen leaf. Based on spy shots that have been circulating the internet, it will look quite similar to the current model, keeping the weird and bubbly body, but at least it won’t look as goofy now that the bug eyes up front are gone. Since it’s set to compete against the Bolt EV and Tesla Model 3, it will likely have around 200 miles in range, but that’s purely speculation at this point. Some rumors suggest a 60-kwH battery. On the plus side, Nissan confirmed last year that the next-gen model will feature the brand’s ProPilot – a technology that operates in similar fashion to Tesla’s AutoPilot.
Will it be a True Competitor?
Note: current Nissan Leaf pictured here.
I really hope that Nissan gives the next-gen leaf a battery that’s sufficient enough to offer up at least 200 miles in range.
Yeah; I’m a little harsh on the little Nissan Leaf. Maybe I shouldn’t be – it was the first mass-produced EV, and it has served a good purpose for some. That, and I’m pretty sure my blood is about 45 percent oil, but we’ll leave that conversation for another time. I really hope that Nissan gives the next-gen leaf a battery that’s sufficient enough to offer up at least 200 miles in range. Even 150 miles would be a big improvement on the current model, but it needs at least 200 if it’s going to compete with the Bolt, the Model 3, and the EVs that are set to hit the market from various manufacturers over the next four years or so. My whole problem with Nissan and the Leaf is that in 2010 it was more than sufficient, but battery technology has advanced so much since then, and Nissan never took advantage of it for the current-gen model. There’s no doubt in my mind that Nissan could have done better than the 30 kWh battery it upgraded to in 2017.
Note: current Nissan Leaf pictured here.
If Nissan managed to keep prices down in the low-to-mid $30,000 range, it could easily garner business from the competitors.
Be that as it may, I’m hopeful for the next-gen Leaf. I have seen the spy shots, though, and I’m not exactly sure that it will look much better than the current model. But, then again, beauty is only skin deep, right? In the end, the Leaf does serve a purpose, but it will only do so if Nissan pulls it together and offers up a range that can take on the real competition. Otherwise, the Leaf is going to die a lonely, boring death. On a side note, I’d like to point out that rumors are pointing to the Leaf possible getting a major price hike as well. Currently available for as little as $30,680 before any tax breaks or deals, the next-gen model could cost as much as $40,000 – a price more in line with the Bolt and upcoming Model 3. Of course, if Nissan managed to keep prices down in the low-to-mid $30,000 range, it could easily garner business from the competitors. The question is, however, whether or not Nissan has the ability to pull it off. For now, we’ll just have to wait, but we’ll be seeing more teasers over the next few months as the Leaf prepares to make its debut and go into production. Stay tuned for updates in the coming weeks and months.
Read our full review on the Nissan Leaf here.