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Nissan Leaf flutters down to $47k driveaway

Circuit breaker: Cheap price or cheap finance – take you pick on Nissan’s all-electric Leaf.

Leaf EV price chopped about $8000 as Nissan clears the decks for revised model

11 Dec 2012

NISSAN Australia has slashed the driveaway price of its all-electric Leaf by more than $8000 and added a number of cut-price finance options to move the current model ahead of the expected launch of a lighter and more efficient new version next year.

Until March 31, the current Leaf can be driven away for $46,990 – thousands of dollars under the recommended retail price of $51,500 (plus on-road costs of about $4400).

This effectively makes it Australia’s cheapest EV by more than $6000 over the smaller Mitsubishi i-MiEV at $48,800 (plus on-road costs) or about $53,089 driveaway.

Nissan is also offering zero per cent finance on Leaf, or an alternative low-repayment finance offer of 3.0 per cent comparison rate at $499 a month over 36 months with a 50 per cent ‘balloon’.

Nissan says it is also offering Leaf to fleets at a special price, although it has not disclosed those figures.

So far this year, 71 Nissan Leafs have been registered in Australia, against 14 Mitsubishi i-MiEVs.

The Leaf was launched in June, but after an initial flurry of 30 sales that month, Leaf’s monthly volumes have slowed to single digits, with only three finding new homes last month.

As GoAuto reported last month, an updated Leaf launched in Japan is said to have been stripped of about 80kg, contributing to a driving range gain of about 14 per cent or 28km.

Under the Japanese JC08 test cycle, the revised Leaf is said to cover about 228km.

An improved regenerative energy recapture system and more efficient ancillary equipment such as the cabin heater and seat heaters have also contributed to the improved range.

The electric motor and lithium-ion battery remains the same size, although the battery’s housing and motor’s drivetrain apparently has been trimmed of weight.

In Australia, where the test is different, Nissan claims a driving range of up to 170km for the 2012 model.

Plans for the 2013 Leaf have yet to be announced by Nissan Australia, but the March 31 date for the end of the new lower pricing regime might provide a hint at timing.

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