2019 Nissan Leaf

Performance


MSRP
$29,990
U.S. News Best Price Program

2019 Nissan Leaf Performance Review

Scorecard

Performance: 8.8

The 2019 Nissan Leaf maintains a comfortable ride over road bumps, and its handling is composed through corners. The Leaf also features e-Pedal technology, which uses the regenerative brakes to slow down the vehicle when you ease off the accelerator. The Leaf doesn't have much horsepower, but its electric motor provides quick acceleration. This Nissan also has a respectable all-electric range, and the electric-only system is hushed.

  • "As with most EVs, smooth, instant power and a total absence of shifting make the Nissan Leaf ridiculously easy to drive. It's a good choice if you want to impress your passengers with your chauffeuring skills." -- Edmunds
  • "On the road, the new Leaf has a more comfortable, relaxed feel. The cabin is quieter, even on the highway. Range is now at 150 miles." -- Autotrader (2018)
  • "Without a doubt, its extra power and torque renders the new Leaf satisfyingly quicker and more responsive." -- Motor Trend (2018)

Acceleration and Power

This EV is powered by a 147-horsepower electric motor. The Leaf also comes with a 40-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery pack and a single-speed transmission. The Leaf's lively acceleration means that you should have no trouble getting up to highway speeds. The Leaf can go 150 miles on a single charge, which is long enough to handle nearly a week’s worth of daily commutes. For those who want a longer range, the new-for-2019 Leaf Plus model is available. It's comes with a 62-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery pack. Depending on the trim, the Leaf Plus can go 215 or 226 miles on a single charge.

The Leaf comes standard with a 6.6-kilowatt onboard charger and takes about 35 hours to fully charge the battery with a 110-volt connection and 7.5 hours with a 220-volt connection. The available quick-charge port allows the car’s battery to recharge to about 80 percent in roughly 40 minutes when accessing a public quick-charge station.

  • "The original was a tortoise, but this second-gen Leaf is more of a hare. Acceleration is brisk, and it's gutsy enough to hold its own in traffic. We can't call it a speed demon, but our measured 0-60 mph time of 7.8 seconds is far better than the 10.2-second performance of the original." -- Edmunds
  • "The Leaf is snappy right off the line and has excellent mid-range passing power." -- Kelley Blue Book (2018)
  • "Nissan also addressed the need for this efficient little electric to drive with a bit more verve. The Leaf now has 147 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque from an all-new e-powertrain. Electric cars deliver all their torque at once, so acceleration will surprise you. Don't let that low horsepower number fool you into thinking this car doesn't move." -- Boston Globe (2018)

Handling and Braking

The Leaf has poised handling and light steering, which makes it easy to maneuver. With the e-Pedal, you can drive the Leaf with just one pedal. Lift your foot off the accelerator, and the Leaf slows down. This works with the regenerative braking system to help conserve power by recharging the battery with energy that would normally be lost with a standard braking system.

  • "Its general smoothness, competent chassis demeanor and steering feel will be utterly familiar to Leaf veterans." -- Edmunds
  • "New to the Nissan Leaf for this generation is e-Pedal technology. At its essence, e-Pedal allows you to drive the Leaf using only the accelerator. The great thing about e-Pedal, though, is that you can turn it on or off with the flip of a switch. Just toggle the selector on the center console – the one that looks like an electronic parking brake – and you're all set for one-pedal driving. Press the accelerator to go, ease off to slow down and lift off completely to come to a stop. It begins to feel natural quickly, especially if you've experienced one-pedal driving or even a braking mode in other electrified cars." -- Autoblog (2018)
  • "The redesign also has netted a vehicle that feels more substantial than the original. The steering is light, which is in keeping with the Leaf's primary mission of urban and freeway commuting. While the Leaf is not a performance car by any stretch of the imagination, its low center of gravity and stance give it a planted feel that translates to driver confidence. It acts and drives like a real car and not a science project." -- Kelley Blue Book (2018)
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2019 Nissan Leaf

MSRP: $29,990 - $42,550

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