Nissan will launch a mainstream extended-range Leaf, following the success of the limited-run model it revealed in January.
The Leaf 3.Zero e+ Limited Edition replaces the standard 40kWh battery pack with a 62kWh unit, yielding a WLTP range of 239 miles – an increase of 62.
Ken Ramirez, Nissan Europe’s sales and marketing boss told Autocar that 1000 orders were taken in the first day and that 3000 had been reached by mid-January. Just 5000 units were allocated for Europe.
“It sold very quickly, and it means we have to recalibrate our total volume expectation for the year," Ramirez said.
“It’s not just a battery but also a high specification. The fact it sold so quickly is a good test of the appetite for this market.”
Ramirez didn't confirm the sales expectation for a full-production-run 62kWh version of the Leaf but said that he expected the 40kWh Leaf to remain the better seller.
“The knowledge of the consumer means you don’t necessarily have to have higher range,” he explained, adding that range is only consumers' third purchase consideration, behind the car's specification and green credentials.
Talking about Nissan's UK sales last year, which fell 32% year on year, Ramirez said: “Our UK performance is particularly affected by a number of elements. But from an EV perspective, we are number one in the UK, with a 36% market share. That gives an indication of where we’re going.”
Nissan is due to launch an electric SUV in 2020, inspired by the IMx concept shown in 2017, as it strives to keep its position as leader of the EV market amid a host of companies launching competitors, including the Hyundai Kona Electric and Kia e-Niro.