Electric car will rely on subsidies to be affordable
30 March 2010

The Nissan Leaf will be priced from 3.76 million yen (£27,000) in Japan and $32,780 (£21,700) in the US, signalling the company is planning to rely on government subsidies to make it affordable.

The Japanese price, announced today, is about a million yen (£7200) below the Japanese asking price for Mitsubishi's i-MiEV electric car, but significantly greater than the current best-selling eco car, the Prius, which starts at two million yen (£14,400).

However, government subsidies will drop the Leaf price by a around one million yen, to three million yen (£21,500), in Japan, and by about a quarter to £16750 in the US.

"The most important point of our cars is zero-emissions," Toshiyuki Shiga, chief operating officer of Nissan, said while promoting the low ownership costs of the Leaf. "Hybrid vehicles still consume gasoline. I want to fully push this sales point."

The Leaf will go on sale later this year in Europe and the United States.

Nissan said it aims to sell 6000 Leaf cars, its first mass-volume all-electric model, in Japan over the next 12 months. Orders open next month, with deliveries due in December.

Follow us on FacebookSee all the latest Nissan Leaf reviews, news and video

Our Verdict

Nissan Leaf

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

Join the debate


30 March 2010

Wow, nissan are in the dog doo doo now, they are also proven liars, they officially stated the car would cost no more than a normal 1.6 litre car. But they price it at £27,000.


To save themselves they need to make the car less than half price in 12 months time when it gets sold to the UK.

oh dear..

30 March 2010

27 grand for this you got to be kidding even with the Gov help to drop it down to 21k it still way over priced, the Japanese must be crazy to buy this over a Puris which is better looking and more well rounded, this car looks like a frog !!

In the Uk this will need to be priced well or it will fail big time next to other cars which seem a lot better on paper

30 March 2010

Does this price include the batteries? Or do you need to add the rental cost of these to the price?

30 March 2010

[quote beachland2] Wow, nissan are in the dog doo doo now, they are also proven liars, they officially stated the car would cost no more than a normal 1.6 litre car. But they price it at £27,000.[/quote]

That is about how much a 1.6 Focus will cost next year so perhaps you can lay off Nissan. ;)

30 March 2010

Why do a lot of these electric green car thingy's resemble designs based around the Gee Wizz, this thing looks disgusting and it's now very expensive... great.

30 March 2010

As pointed out above, can you confirm if this includes batteries or not? Has a major impact on the price - if included this isnt really badly priced - if they are extra then it's a whole other story! Can you please confirm either way Autocar?

30 March 2010

The economics of this type of car are different from a conventional one and I don't think the purchase price is as bad as first appears. Remember that the price per mile of fuelling something like the Leaf is going to be a fraction of a petrol or diesel car plus maintenance will be vastly reduced. I'd be surprised if the ppm figure was any higher than a conventional car and it could be less. However, the real problem is knowing what the used value will be, which is almost impossible to predict because there is no real precedent for a car of this type.

30 March 2010

If the PPM was zero the car is still unaffordably expensive for those looking for cheap motoring. Current 1.6 nissan note is £11,400, this gives an idea of the price the leaf needs to sell for. So if the UK government gives a £5k subsidy for a year then list price can be £16k or so. But when that funding runs out which could be after a really short period nissan will have to make the list price closer to £12k.

30 March 2010

[quote beachland2] If the PPM was zero the car is still unaffordably expensive for those looking for cheap motoring.[/quote]

Well, we could try and do some maths. If in a conventional car, you paying roughly 12ppm on diesel (£5 per gallon at 40mpg) then there are suggestions that on an overnight charge, you'll be paying closer to 2p. So on a standard three year/60,000 mile fleet replacement cycle, you'll save £6,000 over the life of the car. Then lets look at maintenance. There is, essentially, no engine servicing, so let's say that you save another £1,000 there. Then there is road tax, congestion charging, etc. It's not unrealistic to say that over a standard replacement cycle, you could easily save £8,000 over a petrol/diesel car in running costs, which wipes out a huge chunk of the price differential. However, as I said, this is assuming that conventional and electric cars will have similar RVs, which is a moot point. Another point to consider is that these cars appear to be designed and marketed to be leased.

30 March 2010

Petrol costs in the 1.6 would be about £1000 a year for the average UK driver. SO thats a total saving of £1000 a year with ZERO ppm on the leaf. putting servicing aside as thats an unknown at present. Also there is the deterent factor of electric is that it's far less practical than a petrol. You need to know where you can plug it in , and have the time to do it. Which makes it hugely undesirable to many people. electric cars wont be "popular" cars until they cost exactly the same list price as the petrol equivelent.


Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Mercedes-Benz E-Class Estate
    First Drive
    19 March 2018
    The Mercedes-Benz E-Class could be all the estate car you’ll ever want — or it could be overkill. Let’s see which...
  • Dallara Stradale
    The Stradale is the first road-legel car from Italian motorsport constructor Dallara
    First Drive
    16 March 2018
    The motorsport constructor's first road car is inspired by Lotus minimalism. Does it thrill on road and track?
  • Hyundai i30 N
    Standard spec is good so paint colour is our car’s only option
    First Drive
    16 March 2018
    What’s Hyundai’s first hot hatch and N-brand debutant really like? Let’s find out
  • Porsche Boxster GTS
    This is the new GTS version of the Porsche Boxster
    First Drive
    15 March 2018
    The 718-generation Boxster is our favourite roadster of the moment – so is this new GTS variant worth the extra outlay?
  • BMW 5 Series
    First Drive
    15 March 2018
    The BMW 5 Series is top of the mid-exec pack, but is there still room for a diesel saloon in everyday family life?