Currently reading: 2018 Nissan Leaf - latest on 148bhp electric hatchback and its e-Pedal
New car will have more power and a bigger battery; Leaf is confirmed to be available with Nissan's ProPilot semi-autonomous driving system
Sam Sheehan
2 mins read
23 August 2017

The 2018 Nissan Leaf has been previewed again ahead of its 6 September reveal, with a new picture showing the car's rear light design more clearly.

Nissan's official shot comes after images of the full car were leaked onto the internet by a Twitter user in a Nissan Oppama factory in Japan, where production of the car will be handled.

The car's design appears to be inspired by the Micra, as shown by sightings of development cars (see gallery), with sharper lines on the body and a more aggressively stooped nose.

Earlier leaked information posted onto automotive media and marketing site Autobytel suggests the car will have a 148bhp electric drivetrain. This would give the upcoming Leaf about 40bhp more than the outgoing model. Information also shows that the car will have a 40kWh battery; 10kWh higher than the current one's largest option.

Although unconfirmed by Nissan, the information backs suggestions that the new Leaf will have substantially more range. It is predicted to be capable of 340 miles on one charge - more than double that of the old model.

This range will be boosted with the use of new e-Pedal technology (video above), which enhances the car's ability to recharge the batteries while on the move by encouraging the use of just the accelerator pedal. Using the resistance provided by the driveline's regenerative technology to slow the car maximises the amount of time the batteries are re-energised.

Along with the improved drivetrain, the car's range improvement will have been possible as a result of the more slippery exterior. Nissan offered a glimpse of its aerodynamic performance in a preview picture, which shows a silhouette of the car with air lines passing over it (see below).

Nissan is aiming to make the Leaf the segment's most autonomous-capable model, with ProPilot Park its newest system. Using sonars and cameras, the car will be able to park itself in parallel, angled, front or straight back-in parking spots, handling throttle, braking and steering input.


Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

Read our review

Car review
Nissan Leaf

The electric Nissan Leaf has its work cut out competing with cheaper mainstream cars - but it does make a case for itself

Back to top

This park assist system will come as part of the car's ProPilot technology, which also includes a single-lane semi-autonomous feature. It will be Nissan's most advanced autonomous model on sale.

When the future Leaf arrives on roads next year, it will lead Nissan's bid to grow EVs to 20% of sales by 2020.


Join the debate


18 May 2017
Like the sound of that range. Hopefully they will have given it a little more pep too so as to keep up with the i3s. Had a Leaf in the household for over a year now, by far the most popular car - fun, quiet, and if you get second hand, cheap.
Question for Britain is whether Nissan will deign to build it here post Brexit. Guess it depends on whether we have tariffs or can bribe them. Shame really given it will inevitably be a far better seller than the current British made Leaf.

23 June 2017
Profit making companies should not be bribed to stay in the UK.

18 May 2017
I've recently started driving a Nissan Leaf for work and it has really impressed me! It is so smooth and relaxing to drive, and while its not a racing car it is nippy and torque and acceleration are always available regardless of speed. To all petrolheads- I would say don't knock an electric car till you've tried one, they have come a very long way. I think with a new model and increased range Nissan could well hit their target of 20% EV sales by 2020.

19 May 2017
It would be great if all media would stop reporting these pointless teasers that manufacturers like to drip feed to mostly uninterested people. Nissan, either show us the whole car, or don't bother. Who really cares about what the lamp looks like in isolation?

5 June 2017
Looking forward to this already, I'll be looking to replace my current car in 2018 and on paper at least it might well fit the bill, Nissan have just gotta get the look right this time

5 June 2017
340miles range at the current pricing would be a winner. Hopefully they dont do a Tesla and software restrict the range.

5 June 2017
If that's true then they've got my interest - unless the 340 mile range is restricted to a "40K top of the range" trim level.

I agree with steve-p too - these silly 'teaser' pics that car makers are now pumping out are a complete waste of everyone's time. It's a car not the build up for a Hollywood blockbuster or some kind of strip tease!

Marketing people within the motoring industry have a lot to answer for. "Zoom zoom" anyone? No thanks!


5 June 2017
340 mile range?? - where does Autocar get its figures?

I drive a Nissan Leaf with the 30 Kwh battery. I think it is excellent but...

The 30 Kw Leaf's claimed range is 155 miles (nonsensical NEDC rating, just like ICE mileage ratings). I drive only in ECO mode and seek to minimise consumption, getting at best 125 mile range. Which is fine and what I expected.

The 60 Kw battery will likely only provide double those figures - claimed 310 and actual 250. The new leaf may have a slightly more efficient motor, maybe greater regen, maybe more efficient electronics (inverter, DC/DC converter etc) but these are not likely to result in significantly different real world mileage per Kw.

The Chevrolet Bolt with a 60Kw battery is rated by the US authorities for 238 miles (the US is the only country that has realistic mileage ratings), and most testers find it delivers that. The Bolt is about the same size as the Leaf and I suspect has the same batteries as the new Leaf (supplied by LG Chem).

So expect 230 to 250 mile range and you won't be disappointed. There is no great secret to real world electric car range - simply multiply the Kw capacity by 3 if you are heavy footed and 4 if not, except in winter when 2.5 to 3.5 is more realistic. I got 4.2 miles per Kw in the Spring, achievable if you have the time to avoid motorways, or the thick skin to travel at 55mph on them.

The big question about the new Leaf is at what rate it will take rapid charging - current Leaf peaks at 50 Kwh then slows as max capacity is approached (giving an 80% charge in 30 minutes - a 100 mile range), Teslas are at 125 Kwh, the Bolt peaks at 80Kwh, but reportedly slows quickly as it charges and as temp. varies. Charging rate is THE determinant of how useful an EV is for journeys outside town. 125Kwh would be very nice - chargers are already being installed with that capability, 350 Kwh to 400 Kwh planned.

However, currently the rapid charging network in the UK leaves an awful lot to be desired. Often only one rapid charging station per location, invariably not under cover so you can't read the screen in sunshine and get wet the rest of the time (carry an umbrella - to shade the sun or keep the rain off). Different suppliers requires different membership, apps and or cards. Wholly insufficient number of sites, Wales has I think two, one in the north and one on the M4 in the South, the rest is a black hole for EVs - it sucks you in and you may not be able to get out, you may find 3.3 or 6.6 kwh chargers but they add only 12 or 24 miles range per hour!

3 August 2017


thats the most informative post I've seen in a long time... certainly don't get useful information like that in the press!! motoring or otherwise.....

5 June 2017
What is with these ridiculous European range estimates? The testing protocol means they literally have no basis in reality. There US protocol results in much more accurate estimates and means that drivers occasionally exceed range. A much better scenario for those driver electric vehicles.


Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week