Is the New Nissan Leaf Worth RM250k?
This was centre stage at Nissan’s booth during KLIMS 2018. It’s the all new Nissan Leaf. An all-electric hatchback. There was a more docile looking Nissan Leaf before this with less range. What range does the new leaf offer? According too the guys from Edaran Tan Chong, it can go up to 400km on a single charge. (this is the figure obtained by conducting the Japan JC08 cycle) With the NEDC, the figure is a 380km range.
Is that good? It’s alright, but it doesn’t quite beat what a standard fuel tank could do. Do take into consideration that charging also takes longer than filling up gas. A 600 km journey might take a normal car 6 hours, but for an electric car with a 400km range it might take 9 hours to include charging time (even with a fast charger). 400km is a good range but we are yet to get fossil fuel practicality. Good range nonetheless.
What’s the powertrain?
You get Nissan’s EM57 electric motor that gets power from a 40kWh battery.
What is the EM57 electric motor?
It is a 110kW AC Synchronous electric motor.
What performance figures do you get?
110 kilowatts of power and 320Nm of torque.
Is it front-wheel-drive?
Yes, it is.
How many gears do you get?
One to move forward and one for reverse.
What’s special about the Nissan Leaf?
Well, the 380km range is one thing. Other than that, you get some autonomous and electronic stuff like the ProPILOT feature and the e-Pedal.
What is ProPILOT?
An active cruise control system. Something similar to Honda’s sensing feature.
What is e-Pedal?
Driving with one pedal only – the accelerator pedal. You can turn this feature on and off. The brake pedal is still there if you find the e-Pedal to be weird and uncomfortable.
How does it look like on the inside?
Pretty standard, really. Except for the funny looking gear selector.
How big is the Nissan Leaf?
About the size of a Ford Focus. Size and practicality are standard for a hatchback.
How heavy is it?
About 1,500 kilograms.
Does it look spectacular?
No. It looks very subtle.
When are we going to see it in Malaysia?
Some time in June 2019. The “New” Nissan Leaf has been manufactured since October 2017 and is slowly being introduced to the ASEAN market.
What is the price?
The recent Thai launch puts an estimated RM250k price tag for us in Malaysia. I think it’s pricey for an electric hatchback. The electric car market is a new market and new markets are inefficient. In inefficient markets, we don’t really know how to price things yet. What do you think is a suitable price for the new Nissan Leaf?
Where is everybody else?
The only good rival I can think of is the Hyundai Kona Electric. But there are none of them sold in Malaysia yet. Honda and Toyota are yet to show a viable electric car for the Malaysian market. Renault did show the Zoe for a little bit but the Zoe is an old car already. For prices to even out, we’ll have to see more manufacturers offering electric vehicles.