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Nissan reveals Japan-only Leaf Nismo
Nismo-fettled Nissan Leaf gains improved handling, acceleration for Japanese buyers
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20 Jul 2018
NISSAN has uncovered the latest model tuned by high-performance division Nismo, which has tried its hand at a battery-electric vehicle for the first time with a special version of the second-generation Leaf small hatchback.
Only slated for release in the Japanese market, the Leaf Nismo has been tweaked for better acceleration response, improved handling and ride comfort, and sportier styling inside and out.
To improve acceleration from its battery-electric powertrain, Nismo has installed a custom tuning computer that it says delivers a “delicate but strong acceleration response”, while leaving outputs unchanged at 110kW/320Nm.
Several other changes have been made to the Leaf’s driving characteristics, including customised 18-inch alloys and Continental ConitSportContact 5 rubber, new shock absorbers, recalibrated power steering and intelligent brakes, and Nismo-tweaked cornering stabilisation, vehicle dynamics control and ABS brake systems.
As with other Nismo variants, the Leaf has benefited from a number of visual enhancements that set it apart from its regular sibling.
The Leaf Nismo gains a custom front bumper, side sills and rear bumper with signature red trim, a new grille, tweaked LED daytime running lights and rear foglights, black power-folding door mirrors, and Nismo badges on the front and rear of the car.
Nine paint colours will be available on the Leaf Nismo, including two-tone Brilliant Silver/Super Black and Dark Metal Grey/Super Black taken from Nismo’s colour palette.
Changes have also been made to the Leaf’s interior, including a three-spoke Alcantara steering wheel, custom electronic shifter, instrument gauges, seat material and door trim; a carbon-like finish on the instrument panel, a red finish for the air-conditioning vents and ignition switch, and a Nismo badge.
As mentioned, the Leaf Nismo will go on sale in Japan on July 31, but will not be offered outside its home market.
Nissan currently sells two Nismo-fettled models in Australia – the 370Z coupe and GT-R supercar – while the Nismo Juke small SUV has been confirmed for launch in October.
Nismo has also tweaked a number of other Nissan models that never made it to Australia, including the Micra micro hatch, Note hybrid hatchback and Serena people-mover.
The regular version of the second-generation Leaf is set to touch down in Australia before the end of the year.
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