At Under $19K for a Nissan Leaf, Does the Math on Electric Cars Finally Add Up?

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YASUYOSHI CHIBA / AFP / Getty Images

Nissan's Leaf, an all-electric car

Nissan’s Leaf has a long way to go to expand beyond its status as a niche commuter car. Sales have been underwhelming, even with cheap lease offers, leading some to declare the Leaf an overpriced, impractical flop. Will this change now that the Leaf isn’t quite so overpriced?

For a while now, we’ve heard that the new Nissan Leaf will have a cheaper sticker price than older models. Now we know just how much cheaper it’ll be.

Impressively, the retail price of the 2013 Nissan Leaf will drop by over six grand.

This week at the Detroit Auto Show, Nissan announced that the new Leaf S series will start with an MSRP of $28,800, which undercuts the previous least expensive Leaf by $6,400, representing a drop of 18%. Add up the incentives for buyers—$7,500 in federal tax credits, plus a $2,500 rebate in certain states, including California—and drivers can essentially pay “full price” for a Leaf for as little as $18,800.

(MORE: Electric Cars: More Models, Cheaper Prices Coming in 2013)

A drop of more than $6,000 in a vehicle’s sticker price is undeniably a big deal. Normally, an automobile model’s MSRP only goes in one direction: up. Any official dip in price can make news, and when the decline is substantial, like whenVolkswagen dropped the starting price of the Jetta by $2,400, it can provide a major boost to sales.

Is that what we can expect from the new Leaf? Surely, the lower price will push some buyers into getting off the fence in the consideration of an electric vehicle. But Leaf sales have underwhelmed before, falling well short of sales goals in each of its first two years on the market, and they may do so again. Nissan anticipated a 50% rise in Leaf sales in 2012, only to see sales increase by 22%, even as the automaker rolled out discounted lease deals toward the end of the year. Before that, Leaf sales were often down compared to corresponding months in 2011.

For 2013, Nissan is projecting a sales increase of at least 20% for the Leaf, thanks to the newly cheaper price. “Now customers won’t have to pay a premium for owning a green car that’s really fun to drive, and that’s exciting,” Billy Hayes, global vice president of Leaf sales, stated via press release. That statement, of course, basically owns up to the idea that anyone buying a Leaf in the past was indeed paying a high premium for the privilege.

(MORE: Is It Time to Declare the Nissan Leaf a Flop?)

While the new lower-priced S model Leaf is getting all the attention, the 2013 versions of the SV and SL Leaf are also cheaper than preceding models, by $3,380 and $2,410 respectively. How can Nissan cut prices like this? Lower costs for batteries and other parts help. Nissan may also be willing to eat some of the potential profits in order to get more Leafs on the road; that wouldn’t be surprising given the speculation that surfaced last year that Chevy loses tens of thousands of dollars on each Volt sold.

Regardless of how Nissan gets to the price point for the Leaf, has it reached the point that mainstream buyers will bite? A report from the Congressional Budget Office published last fall estimated that when comparing a pure battery-powered vehicles like the Leaf to a similar gas-powered car, “tax credits would still need to be about 50 percent higher than they are now to fully offset the higher lifetime costs of an all-electric vehicle.” In other words, instead of a $7,500 tax credit, something like $11,250 would cut it.

The math changes, however, now that the cheapest Leaf is $6,000 less. State rebates help put the math in the Leaf’s favor too, of course. Based on the new math, it would seem that it’s less expensive to own a Leaf rather than a similar traditional car like the Nissan Versa, all things being equal.

The problem, of course, is that all things aren’t equal. After adding up initial price, insurance, “fuel” and other expenses, a Leaf owner may pay less out of pocket than a Versa owner over the course of five to seven years, but over that time period the Versa owner is never subjected to so-called “range anxiety.” The Leaf owner can only make it 70 or 80 miles without having to stop for hours (overnight, probably) to recharge. The Versa owner, on the other hand, can embark on serendipitous road trips without carefully plotting mileage and charging stations and without having to pause for huge chunks of the day to refill the tank.

(MORE: Why the Car of the Future Will Be Powered by … Yep, Gasoline)

For drivers in search of a vehicle strictly for mid-size commuting purposes, the Leaf makes more sense than ever. Yet for drivers who demand more in a car, the Leaf probably isn’t the solution — at any price.

115 comments
MartinFoster
MartinFoster

Moving people from fossil fuel to zero emission vehicles is tasks. But dwcreativerse doesn't seem to get that tax advantages have been set up for fossil fuel for years. That is a really naive perspective. Disadvantages often apply to drilling fossil fuels in some states because of exclusive dependency and protection of commodities.  And guess what, carbon emissions from our transportation isn't good idea. 


Full disclosure: I drive a Leaf daily


Everyday I do not contribute 8-15+ pounds of carbon emissions into the air we breath


I travel on 4.3 miles on average per kWh


And what is your pollution and energy usage?


It only takes a few dollars unattached to drive to work for me everyday.

Do you think that a new idea might be a good idea?  Or are you going to put a oil burning smoking device on truck to say >> I hate people that say lets use energy smarter and prepare a future we can live in?




dwcreativerse
dwcreativerse

So let me get this straight...


Nissan and the US government are willing to steal $7,500 of people's hard earned tax money who don't have/want a Leaf in order to subsidize those select few who do want one? And THEN an additional $2,500 "rebate" is given to people in certain states? 


Am I missing something? Or are we getting robbed by this "commercially-viable" vehicle that is not sustainable on their own without stealing from people?



UncleSiam
UncleSiam

@dwcreativerse By polluting the environment, one is stealing. That is why there is a tax break for those who are not polluting as much. I am a Libertarian and I know where you are  coming from but in this case, they government is giving you taxes back (always a good libertarian ideal). They are not giving you more than you earned. If you only paid 3000 in taxes, you are only getting 3000.

Xeon
Xeon

@dwcreativerse Yeah, I'd say you're missing something, the big picture. Not only do fossile fuel vehicles pollute far more than an electric car (You know -- Some people actually want this planet to survive the human race, but that's probably a pipe dream at this point), they have a dependency on a non-renewable resource which is quickly diminishing.


We've gone to war over oil in Iraq (Sure there was other reasons, but oil is generally considered the primary reason), where thousands of Americans have lost their lives fighting for something because the government said to.  Billions of dollars spent because the government was lobbied by big wig oil executives. With oil prices rising due to shortages, greed and ancient technology it defies logic that one would buy a vehicle that burns non-renewable resources especially with less than 50% efficiency. One can argue that electricity is still generated with oil, fossile fuel and natural gas, but there are other renewable means by which energy can also be generated that are not viable to be used inside a single vehicle (E.x. solar, wind, geothermal or nuclear).


It really doesn't make sense for the government to keep helping oil companies fight to keep their CEO's pockets lined with the money they get at the cost of American lives and resources. The cost to the government, and therefor also the tax payer, is far less for rebates and credits for an electric car than it is to keep ancient fossile fuel around and burn it without any attempt to solve the impending fate of us running out of fossile fuel.


These incentives are only temporarily offered as a means to help promote demand for electric vehicles and thusly bring about the revolution that will decrease manufacturing costs and in turn make the need for government incentives no longer necessary when electric vehicles start to cost less than those that run on fossile fuel.

solardowork
solardowork

Good news ( EV's ) Electric Vehicles soon to get 400 + HWY Miles and out run all others.


The Lord's Little Helper

Paul Felix Schott

jtryan8981
jtryan8981

where do these experts get the 70 mile range     i drive a leaf    every night i charge it up    the range in the morning is always more than 100 miles                the Achilles heel is the range     can we get it up to 200 miles by 2016      again the experts say very doubtful      there is a company in israel that is developing a battery  with a 1000 mile range     when my lease on the leaf is up in 2016 i will get a new one for $20000 with a range of 400 miles       there will be quick charging stations available     they have them in san diego now        until then if you want to take a trip the current leaf will take you to the train station    

DENDEN99
DENDEN99

Well Brad Tuttle you clearly stopped short in your researching how long it takes to charge an electric car.  Fast charge stations do it in 1/2 an hour and that's today, sometime tomorrow I'd immagine it would be much quicker.   As well in the future there will be battery exchange stations where you just remain in the car.   thumbs down

katied
katied

I've been driving a Leaf for 19,000+ miles now and absolutely love it. I'm saving a ton of money on gas. There's virtually no maintenance, and it's super fun to drive.

Assuming gas and electricity costs go up 5% a year, I'll save about $245,000 on gas and electricity over the 30-year lifespan of my solar panels -- which provide more than enough electricity for my house and car. Best investment ever.

jasavak
jasavak

I would like to see a version with a 50% larger battery pack with a 120 mile range and 60kw charging in major cities .   I would pay $6,000 extra for that .

Mark_Stewart
Mark_Stewart

Sally Johnson, Chief Operating Officer of DevonshireCWM, that while the overall impression was that the manufacturing sector was over the worst of a "pretty torrid 2012, it still has its work cut out to return to sustainable growth in the face of ongoing challenging domestic and international conditions"

ChristopherOrdway
ChristopherOrdway

Anyone who even mentions that article Reuters put out about the Volt instantly loses all credibility. That was the most cherry picked numbers that anyone with half a brain could see through, unfortunately most Americans don't have half a brain and on it goes in articles like this. That articles was assuming all of the development cost of the Volt was being amortized over the Volts GM has already produced and it was all speculation on the numbers anyway. Not to mention it doesn't include all kinds of perception problems the Volt fixes. People think Toyota is so innovative with the Prius. GM had to combat that and they did with a wonderful new technology that to be honest is superior to all others save for the cost which is bound to fall.

Good for Nissan for getting the price of this vehicle to where it is. I think people will become more and more comfortable with these cars. Some day I'm hoping for an EV that is just a regular car. Not an econobox like the Leaf, not a supercar like the Tesla. Just a car.

wiredforstereo
wiredforstereo

"The Leaf owner can only make it 70 or 80 miles without having to stop for hours (overnight, probably) to recharge." 

What a load of hooey.  I own a Leaf, and what do I do when I want to take a long trip?  TAKE THE OTHER CAR!

Taiping
Taiping

With all the strange denunciations and attacks on electric cars, I can't help but think that somebody is getting paid to attack them. We drive a Leaf  and we have a gas powered car too. The Leaf is great for going to work, going to the store, going to church, going out to eat, going to a friend's house. In other words, nearly everything we do. It doesn't pollute the air, we can charge it from solar panels both at our work and at home (120v or 240v), plus it's fun.  We automatically charge it to 80% using a Blink charger. I'll kick it up a little for longer trips. If we need to go farther afield we take the other car. It's not complicated. It's not an inconvenience. Arguments attacking the electric cars are really going over the top ridiculous.


R.s.Rosenquist
R.s.Rosenquist

Interchangeable, removable batteries.  Your battery is low, you pull into a gas station, they have a fully charged battery ready for you to switch out.  They take your old battery and charge it and then give it to somebody else.

SO. SIMPLE. Why don't we have this yet?

BruceMorganWilliams
BruceMorganWilliams

Bottom line - if you commute between 20 and 100 miles a day,  and you have another way to take long trips,  it totally makes sense to go electric.   Simple math.   

timhebb
timhebb

Nice to see that EV bashers (who invariably know next to nothing about them) are growing scarcer in public discourse these days. To those remaining ludicrous Luddites, I propose to you that LEAFs and their descendants will be flourishing on our streets when Hummers are extinct and are only a distant memory...oh, wait, they are already! Hhhmm...

MichaelMastandrea
MichaelMastandrea

The Leaf has its place, but the Volt has the right combination of pure electric, and gas to remove range anxiety. I own a volt and am getting 44 miles electric. Most days I stay under the 44 miles, and some days in the 60-70 miles range. Gas mode is approx 37 mpg, so my 1 gal range is 81 miles at 3.85 per gal (if traveling 81 miles between charges). Overall MPG after 6,000 miles is 94MPG, and total range electric and 9 gal of fuel is near 400.

Sw422
Sw422

Seems like we've got two sets of people here -- people who find the Leaf suits their lifestyle and are very happy with it, and those who don't feel it matches what they want in a car so they bash the hell out of it.  It's pretty funny, actually.  It's like pickup truck owners hollering til they're red in the face that compact cars SUCK!  Please.  If you don't want an electric car right now, you don't need to buy one -- please don't scream about how awful it is.  Because for what it is and does, it's pretty well executed.  Instead, be glad there are early adopters that are helping to move electric-powered technology to market.  As prices keep coming down and the technology keeps improving, eventually they may reach the point where you'll want an electric vehicle yourself.

hugeoh
hugeoh

I'd be more interested in getting a Leaf if there was also a way to get a decent deal on a 240-volt charger with installation in my garage.  There are no longer any federal tax incentives for such residential installations; nor are there state incentives where I live.  Who wants to spend nearly $2000 on the charger and installation?  Instead of more "Do the Math" articles on getting an EV car,  I wish someone could figure out and tell  me how to get 240-volt charger with installation for really cheap.

DrDrey
DrDrey

If leaf was good enough, we wouldn't need to debate whether the math adds up or need obscene government rebates to get people to buy it, or drum up demand by forcing government agencies spend taxpayer funds on the latest fad.

JoeGisondi
JoeGisondi

Hey get this, Local govt and the federal govt are upset because the el cars are lowering their take on the gas taxes. So, if you own an ec your local govts and the feds are looking to tax you additional monies for highway and road usage. OPPPS. So much for those savings. 

MikeLand
MikeLand

I saw there is now and electric RV.  The whole back end is filled with batteries.  It supposedly gets 200 miles on a charge.  I guess that's ok as when I travel with an RV, I don't care about how long it takes to get anywhere and I have my luxury hotel on wheels.  The nice thing though is that once you get to a truck stop or RV park, you recharge off of city power.  If you do need to park in the boonies, you will have to leave the generator running pretty much all night to get a full charge.  But that's the nice thing.  If you do run out in the boonies, you can fire up the generator and get about 50 miles of charge per hour.  You can't however run the generator, drive, and charge at the same time. 

MikeLand
MikeLand

Of course if you need a new battery set for it, you just go down to Batteries Plus and pick one up.

LukePaiz
LukePaiz

The one and only reason for automoblie ownership IMHO is the freedom that it provides to be as spontaneous as you wish. I very often will make an on the spot decision to head out onto the open road to some place. The LEAF is the antithesis to this. With very limited infrastructure as well as all the other incoveniences that have been mentioned numerous times (limited range, tons of time to recharge etc.) an electric vehicle defeats the very purpose of owning an automobile! ...and I say this as an Electrical Engineer.

HYBRIDS are the future, not electrics. With hybrids you get the best of both worlds, so to speak. Manufacturers should focus on improving hybrid efficiency, as there is a lot of room still left for improvement. My next vehicle is going to be the Lexus RX 450H. I had my trusty 2000 LS 400 in for service at the local lexus dealership and they gave me the RX 450H for a few days as s loaner. I got a WHOPPING 28 mpg IN THE CITY of all things!!! (of course, driven conservatively to coax max mileage). Driven in the same conditions, my LS 400 would give about 14-ish mpg!! On the highway I got about 30 going about 70-75mph (just a bit more that the 28-ish I get with my LS). If manufacturers really put their heart and soul into it, they could definitely improve hybrid efficiency by another 30-50%. At that point fuel economy would become a moot issue.

leafdriver
leafdriver

I agree the Nissan LEAF isn't for everyone.  However, realistically, it fits the commuting needs of many Americans who a) either have a 30 minute commute or less, or b) commute about an hour each way and can charge at work.  I've owned a LEAF for nearly 2 years now, and it suits my work commuting needs just fine.  My daily commute is short enough that I only need home charging at night while I sleep.  We had solar panels installed to offset the increase in electrical usage.  If we have a longer distance to drive, such as a family road trip, we drive my spouse's gas-powered vehicle.  Having driven a LEAF for nearly two years, I really have nothing bad to say about it.   

bertinspain
bertinspain

Where is the math? The title is "does the math add up". So where is the math break down of ownership compared to fuel savings and electric bills? Or can't CNN do simple math?

j95lee
j95lee

In reality, consumers aren't going to sacrifice convenience and efficiency or tolerate an imperfection in a product to serve their ideology. 

Even if charging stations were pretty all over the place, the thought of having to recharge the car for a extended period of time after 70-80 miles per hour will give consumers pause. The battery can be expensive to replace and is a potential fire hazard, or so I hear. Since you have to recharge the car, I'm guessing you'll have to park it in a garage, and that's not always an option for people. 

If cars could run on water, everyone will buy that car. Not so much because they care about the environment, but because water is downright free compared to the price of gas. If you don't satisfy consumer demands, then whatever secondary goals the product will achieve  is mostly a moot point. 

MichaelBecker
MichaelBecker

This is a bad joke.

The only reason they - and all electric vehicle manufacturers, especially Government Motors - can sell ANY of these damn things is because the federal and some state governments are chipping in big time on both the front and back end.  Big credits on the front end and when they come off lease, the manufacturers will take a big write off when they can't sell the turkeys as semi-used cars.

TheDisclosure
TheDisclosure

These cars; they need to get the miles on these things longer. 80 miles? Are you kidding me. Can't even make it to work and back. Fix the batteries please. Look up some of the work of Nikola Tesla and Moray to see how much of a reality this really is.

Taiping
Taiping

ageeorge is right. And so are the other writers who point out that a Leaf has a particular and actually very useful purpose. We live 40 miles from San Francisco and can use our Leaf for about 80 percent of our driving needs, including daily commutes (in the car pool lane no matter how many are inside). I go to SF frequently and have never failed o find a free charging station near the places I visit. So while the car may make the round trip anyway, I never have to worry about it. Am installing solar now to get more benefit.

ageorge
ageorge

Interesting article on electric cars. I am pleased that electric cars are getting cheaper. 

But the author is obviously grounded in the current western cultural attitude of taking no responsibility for the planet that we leave for future generations. No consideration that perhaps a person should tolerate a bit less fun in driving or some inconvenience to do the right thing...  For me the satisfaction of driving causing less damage to the environment because of my all electric Leaf makes me feel better than any fun driving experience I had driving BMWs for 20 years. For even  more satisfaction I now charge with my solar photo voltaic system.

QuietStormX
QuietStormX

Are you crazy? The Nissan Leaf and all only electric cars are limited at being the only car anyone owns. You need extended range electric cars like the Chevy VOLT that goes 300 miles or more and fillups maybe once a month. More than these asian  worthless jokes that are city cars only with very limited miles use.

KevinHull
KevinHull

I'm getting fed up with auto reviewers reminding us that "The Leaf owner can only make it 70 or 80 miles without having to stop for hours (overnight, probably) to recharge..." and, based on that, suggesting the car may not be a good option as yet.  I get that the Leaf is an electric car, I'm not about to buy the car and then be surprised by that.  If I don't need to be reminded that the sports car I buy cannot haul a load of gravel or wood chips for the back yard, because it is a "SPORTS CAR", why do I need to be constantly reminded by reviewers that the electric car I am buying actually has a range limitation because it is an "ELECTRIC CAR"?  You are needlessly fueling people's fears and driving down demand for a car that deserves a great deal more consideration!


CanePazzo
CanePazzo

The extra cost outweighs the benefits.  Except for a few eco-minded people these cars have a long way to go to be a commercial success.

JamesFeeney
JamesFeeney

The electric cars are getting better. However 73 miles on a charge is a little short. There is net battery technology that might streatch this out to 150 Miles. If you put in extra batteries this may go up to 200 miles or more on a charge. Once you get up into the 200 miles on a charge range, you get into a much bigger market. The batteries unfortunately still cost a lot. This is coming down. I think some good specs will be seen in a year or two.

JoshuaR.Murray
JoshuaR.Murray

Not when I need to plug that baby in every 4 hours for 6-8 hours only to drive another 4. I know quick charge technology is making waves that brings charging time down to 1-2 hours and even as low as 30 minutes for a half charge, but that's just not going to cut it. The other problem is the quick charge systems KILL batter longevity, and even traditional charging over time will yield shorter and shorter charges. Eventually you have to replace the batteries on those cars (within 5 years on average) which costs a pretty penny. I'm more apt to go for innovations in hybrids with both more efficient engines that can also run on alternative fuels. Electric cars just don't seem very practical, and I don't personally see that changing much down the road compared to other available, and soon to be available technologies.

itsdonny
itsdonny

We just got an Electric Ford Focus. We LOVE it!!!  We save more on gas than our monthly car payment and the car is so great to drive!  Theh Leaf is great too.  If I had to do it again I would save the money and get the new 2013 Leaf.  All the people that talk trash about electric cars don't actually have one.

timhebb
timhebb

"The Leaf owner can only make it 70 or 80 miles without having to stop for hours (overnight, probably) to recharge."

Wrong! The LEAF offers the option of a HIGH-SPEED DC FAST CHARGE port to recharge 80% in about 15 minutes.  It's referred to as Level 3 charging, in addition to the more common Level 2 at 240 volts, or slow "trickle" charging from a standard 120 volt outlet referred to as Level 1.

It's understandable that you overlooked this option, as Level 3 charging facilities are not yet common.  But they will begin to be, at least in California, this year, as several public and private organizations will begin installing networks of L3 charging equipment, including Nissan dealership locations, the Los Angeles Dept. of Water and Power, and others.

The revolution has only just begun!  Stay tuned, and stay up to date...



worldsanitytest
worldsanitytest

Can you all please help me find any errors in this sanity test?  Also, practice creating them to increase health to the USA.

Sanity Test: A sanity test is a question about objective consensual reality or the verifiable scientific, mathematical truth of reality for an individual person.  It is not a game or contest which requires another person.  It favors nobody and does not pick sides with people, groups, parties, or ideals.  It is an individual test without other people and without bell curves.

Read the facts and answer the question

Facts:
1) A violator of law causes damages (losses)
2) A victim forgives violator without repayment of damages (losses)
3) A judge interprets crime as not having damaged society and not causing punitive damages.

Truth:
If the victim forgives damages, the judge is wrong.  There is a loss to society.

You, likely, felt an emotional pressure or force in your mind when you read "If the victim forgives damages, the judge is wrong"

Why is the judge wrong?

dfwgreencars
dfwgreencars

I've been driving a Leaf here in Texas for 2 years now.  I love it, its the best car I've ever had.  With my commute being less than 20 miles per day, the range has never even been an issue.  On most days the car is fully recharged in an hour or two after getting home, since the battery is never really run that far down.   In the last 2 years there have only been just a handful of cases where i had to drive a different car (usually my wife's car) because the destination was too far away.  

The Leaf has actually become our primary family car.  I mean think about it.  You are getting ready to go somewhere and there are two cars in the garage.  If you know the trip is going to cost you $8 in gasoline, or 80 cents in electricity, the choice is obvious which car to take.

AndyHerron
AndyHerron

I lease a 2012 Chevy Volt and could not be happier.  My lease deal in March of this year was $2,500 down and $350 per month plus tax for the base model.  I pay a bit more because my model had about $5,000 in additional options.  My local utility in South Floirda subsidzed the installation of a level 2 charger on the side of my house, next to where I park.  It charges the car fully in about 4 hours (the regular charger takes ten).  The car is fantastic.  Beautiful inside and out with great technology all around.  It is peppy, handles well and is so quiet.  I get 40 miles on a charge, which costs only $1.20 in electricity.  My daily round trip commute is about 30 miles, so it's all electric.  But if I need to drive further for any reason, the gas engine automatically kicks in when the battery is drained and the car drives exactly the same (but a bit louder).  Even if you have to use gas you are getting about 33 mpg.  I have driven about $9,500 miles so far and used only 60 gallons of gas (some occasional 100-200 mile trips).  That's about 160 mpg on average.  There are plenty of people who would take my lease deal on a gas powered four door sports sedan.  But depending on your driving habits, you rarely have to buy gas in a Volt.    

VincentWolf
VincentWolf

Yeah lower prices for parts but they don't stock them if your car is in an accident so good luck waiting 3 months for parts!!!!!!

That's what happened to us.  Our Leaf was in an accident July 23rd and towed to shop.  We got it back October 29th more than 3 months later!!!

TrajanSaldana
TrajanSaldana

Until the infrastructure for true electric vehicles is built there will be no real market for these cars...how long did it take to create it for gas vehicles? certainly not overnight

Elmer117
Elmer117

I really, really, really wanted to buy a Leaf, but living 22 miles from my work (1 way) and wanting to run errands while in town after work, I was nervous that the Leaf would not have the range.  I would have to highway drive 5 days a week to/from work at 70 mph with the air conditioner running (I live in Southeast Texas).  I was afraid that would help eat up each night's charge really quickly.  I ended up buying a 2012 Toyota Prius V (the station wagon); I average 40 mpg with my highway driving, and I am very happy with the car.  The times I do get to run errands around the nearby cities, if I am below 40 mph I frequently am on EV battery power in my Prius.

smorrislfp
smorrislfp

I have a 2011 Leaf. It is a great commuter car. For two car families having one electric car can make sense.  My per mile cost of commuting is one fifth of what it was when I was paying for gasoline.  The Leaf has not caught on, but in the states with subsidies it will net out at a very competitive price and sales will undoubtedly go up, the only question is how much.  The Leaf is quiet and the power is very smooth since there are no transmission shifts. It is a pleasant car to drive.

rlnortrup
rlnortrup

I live in the country, 20 miles from the next city of any size. Why do people NOT buy these cars? Well, By the time I go a few miles the wrong way to pick up my 90 year old mom, go to town, do our shopping doctors appts. etc, I MIGHT get her home, it it is doubtful I would get back to my home. And that is the nearest town. The truth is, these cars might be good for cities, but how much use are they at present to the rest of us? I live in a relatively crowded midwest. Imagine if you live in the west with sparcer cities! No Sunday drives, no vacation trips by car. I couldn't get from Springfield, Illinois to St. Louis in one charge, let alone Chicago. And believe me, I'm salivating over the desire for an electric. And, I have 0% interest in a hybrid. Also, I have YET to hear what it costs to replace the battery when one wears out. I've never met a rechargable battery yet, that does not need replaced fairly often. But I haven't heard one single word about how that figures in to the cost of the car or its "mileage" .

LindaPeterson
LindaPeterson

I live in an area where electricity is pretty expensive, so I am dubious about being able to save any money. If the manufacturers would educate the public about how recharging an electric car affects your electricity usage (and bill), then perhaps there would be more interest. Is it like running a small fan all night or is it like running your central air conditioning all night? This information is vital to making a good decision on vehicles powered by electricity vs fossil fuels.

LogicalPosition
LogicalPosition

The wife and I live in a smallish town, Johnstown, Pa. I drive Meals on wheels 3 days a week(50 miles total), and visit our mom 2-3 times a week 20 mile round trip. Our shopping and essentials are within 5 miles round trip. I'd love to get one of these, however my 55+ highrise wants $200/mo for charging electric cars in my garage. I spend $100/mo(600 miles) on fuel for the 08 Subaru wagon as it is. Where is my savings? 

Do they have charging stations that would offer better value at the malls, etc, where we could spend some time while our car charges? Is this something ppl experience in larger markets?