Nissan Leaf (2010) electric prototype CAR review Road Testing …

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Nissan Electric Cars

Nissan Leaf (2010) prototype CAR review

By Gavin

First Drives

11 June 00:01

It’s finally The world’s first practical electric production car that look like it’s by a kid with a crayon and driven by The Nissan Leaf may not be an exciting But it is an important one.

If it sells – and CEO Carlos Ghosn is betting his future on it – this may be a Mini/Model T Game changers aren’t very often.

The Leaf goes on sale next year and, as as David Cameron rubber-stamps Mandelson’s grant, European will come from from 2013 (and Japan until then). the G-Wiz and other similarly electric runabouts, this is not a that circumvents all safety (and common sense). a proper car, meeting all hatchback safety expectations, five, and looks like a car. Nissan purposefully it look ‘normal’, hinting at (note the rakish TGV like-nose) but not too Dan Dare.

This is a mass-produced after all, and expected to mass appeal.

OK, so what does the new Nissan cost – and what’ll she do, mister?

£28,350 – but that drops to after the UK government grant. European governments, as well as the US and are offering similar rebates.) still a fair bit more a same-size Golf or Focus. But the much lower running – the electricity should cost a fifth as much as petrol or – are factored, the AA reckons you’ll get extra money back in three years. The Leaf is exempt from London’s charge and road tax, and is zero company car tax for the first years.

Top speed — 90mph is some way behind petrol rivals, although 0-60mph in seconds is similar to a mainstream Focus. But the Leaf isn’t for top-end motorway and A-road Rather, it’s for urban and use. Off the mark and from the Leaf feels brisk.

a corollary of its meaty V6-like What’s more, that is delivered almost instantly.

The accelerates with amazing and refinement. It’s quieter a Rolls Phantom at low speed. Up to the only discernible sound – obvious to pedestrians than – is a muted jet engine whirr, an sound (conveyed by a nose-mounted designed to warn pedestrians of its

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Over 15 mph, it cuts Nissan figures tyre and engine whine provide aural warning after

And the handling?

This was the really surprise. The Leaf is no lightweight, at over 1500 kg, mainly due to the Yet those new-generation lithium ion are all cleverly mounted in the floor, the seats.

This keeps the main of the car nice and low.

The upshot is handling and little roll. The electric motor up front This is one front-drive car that have the majority of its mass over its front axle.

is sharp, steering pleasingly and light, and overall agility is a or two better than the mid-size norm. Mind you our test was on a Japanese track. We’ll to wait and see how it fares on Britain’s B-roads, but the signs are promising.

Click ‘Next’ below to more of our Nissan Leaf drive

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