Automakers are taking electric mobility worldwide. And personally, I can’t wait to see what’s in store. These days it’d be hard to deny the advantages of electric production. Whether you’re down for the cause or not. Regardless of what consumers think, it’s quite obvious that automakers have gotten the assignment: start manufacturing electric models as quickly as possible. Albeit rather slowly in the scheme of things, it’s clear to see there is no turning back. Electric is fully taking over. For environmentalists, the rise of electric production is a true nod to the shifting times and a distinct departure from oil. I, among many drivers, look forward to what’s to come but know it was a long road to get here. It took a few electric pioneers to lay the framework for range, performance, and charging. One of those being the infamous all-electric Nissan Leaf. So today, I’ll take an introspective look at this time-honored electric model. Can the 2022 Nissan LEAF stand up to modern competition? Let’s see.
Here’s what works
The Nissan LEAF doesn’t usually come to mind when you chat with consumers about electric vehicles. But for environmentalists, in particular, this model has carried great value throughout the years. Having been around for over a decade, we’ve seen the LEAF go from break-out model in its first years of production to easily lost amongst the crowd. Though the EV upholds all the qualities that conscious buyers esteem for, it’s never really been a vehicle that consumers consistently flock to. Unless, of course, you’re adamant about reducing your carbon footprint. Then the choice is obvious. All said and done, as a Nissan LEAF owner it’s likely you’ve come to appreciate the following features in this hatchback model:
- Comfortable interiors
- Decent noise control
- Quality handling
- Excellent passenger safety
- Affordable pricing in the EV sector
Truth be told, most of the features mentioned above come standard in several of Nissan’s models. That is why both safety and comfort have become synonymous with the Japanese automaker over the years. All things considered, the new and improved 2022 Nissan LEAF delivers in those aspects. It’s a comfortable ride with optimal safety and serves as a great alternative to internal combustion vehicles similar in size and candor. My question now is: Is that enough?
And what doesn’t…
Although there are specific functions that I truly admire about the 2022 Nissan LEAF, as well as its long-established history, there are definite misses that are worth pointing out. Here’s where the LEAF falls short of most consumer expectations:
Sparing in style yet an improvement
Having a biased view on what an electric vehicle should like, the Nissan LEAF certainly doesn’t rank supreme. After all, there’s quite a few renowned models available, including the Polestar 2, Ford Mustang Mach-e, and fan-favorite Tesla Model 3. That being said, the original design of the Nissan LEAF has improved slightly since its original debut in 2010. The 2022 Nissan LEAF is definitely the most stylish version when comparing previous generations.
Despite what you think about Nissan or the design of the LEAF, there’s a reason it became the world’s first mass-produced 100% electric vehicle before the wave of electric manufacturing hit the market. Prior to Tesla winning the hearts of electric buyers, the LEAF was one of the few all-electric options. It was groundbreaking in its own right. But as far as I’m concerned, the overall look of the LEAF does not satisfy the modern driver. The 2022 Nissan LEAF may have gotten an overhaul this year, but it’s fair to say there are more attractive options to compare it to.
What is the range of 2022 Nissan LEAF?
In my humble opinion, when it comes to electric mobility, it’s all about the range. Although, that is all relative to how often you drive. At the time the Nissan LEAF first emerged on the scene, electric vehicles were more viewed as a second or third vehicle options. In that instance, range might not have been as big of a factor. However, nowadays most drivers are turning to EVs as their primary means of transportation. So in that case, electric models, like the 2022 Nissan LEAF, need rack up in convenience in order to be deemed a reliable day-to-day car.
So — does the Nissan LEAF live up to a modern EV buyer’s expectations? Not quite.
With a standard battery size of 40 kWh and available 60 kWh in Plus trim, the LEAF tends to average a range of 150-220 miles per charge. So to speak, it’s not exactly the type of vehicle you want to take on a state-wide roadtrip nor a day full of errands. However, it is a great option if you have a limited commute to work each day or use this EV model as an alternative for leisure driving.
Generally speaking, the 2022 Nissan LEAF, although better than previous years, falls a bit short in comparison to its competition. Emerging models like the Kia Niro EV and Hyundai Kona Electric pack more battery power with the same basic functions and technologies that drivers love. Simply put, the range is a bit deceiving and a lot of drivers report mixed reviews on the advertised range capacity.
The time to go electric is now — but maybe not in a 2022 Nissan Leaf
One thing consumers love about the Nissan LEAF is its low entry price. With a starting MSRP of $27,800, you could make a case for affordability alone. In terms of budget, it’s easy to say — “What’s not to love?”. Not only do you get the uncapped safety of a Nissan model, you also make a real contribution toward helping out the environment.
At the same time, with the rate that new and improving electric models are entering the automotive market, it’d be hard to deny that other options aren’t the better investment. Beyond lacking in the style department, rising competition is putting significant pressure on a model like this to survive in the long-run. Purchasing a used LEAF might just be the better move than buying a new 2022 Nissan LEAF.
Is the LEAF a good car to buy?
In short, this EV doesn’t quite live up to the mainstream competition happening in 2022. With a lower range and somewhat lackluster design, the LEAF is more of a niche buy rather than a leading EV. During its initial heyday, it definitely got the ball rolling on electric production. But similar to all evolving markets, the new and innovative tend to outpace the originals. It may be fair to say that the LEAF is becoming more outdated by the minute.
By all means, the 2022 Nissan LEAF won’t disappoint in regards to price or safety, but the model itself has a short life ahead. Multiple reports have claimed the Nissan LEAF will be discontinued by mid-decade.
Thanks for reading! Let us know what you think about the 2022 Nissan LEAF in the comment section below. Would you invest in this model year or choose a different make and model?