Nissan was the first mainstream manufacturer to bring a high-quality, viable, practical electric car to Britain. Less than a decade later, the choice has grown rapidly – Nissan is just one of the players in this small but growing segment, and we can now compare the Leaf to a number of excellent rivals.
Electric cars represent a tiny proportion of all cars sold, and an even smaller percentage of cars on the road. But for buyers who have practical access to charging facilities, their negligible running costs and reduced environmental impact make them an extremely attractive choice.
We’re driving the 2018 Leaf, the second-generation car. It’s a five-door hatchback with a 40kWh battery. Please bear in mind that an improved version of this car, which offers around 60kWh and a commensurate increase in driving range, will be launched later this year.
Our car: Nissan Leaf ‘Tekna’ with 40kWh battery
List price when new: £28,390
Optional extras fitted: Metallic paint (£575), ProPilot self-parking system (£1,090)
Price as tested: £30,055
June 13, 2018
Fuel economy this week: 3.6 miles per kWh
The arrival of a new long-term test car is normally quite enjoyable, but not on this occasion. It was the end of a fairly long week, which had been further lengthened by several successive late evenings in the office and the hum of low-level stress. It was 9pm by the time I got to the car park and, after walking through Victoria while trying to carry too much stuff, I just wanted to get home.