2018 Nissan Leaf gets matured styling and whole host of advanced features with much improved electric driving range
Nissan will likely be following its rivals Toyota and Hyundai on bringing the EVs to our domestic market. The sales and local production of Toyota Camry will have inspired other global manufacturers to evaluate their electric and hybrid vehicles in Indian scenes and capitalise on the growing potential in premium space despite the post-GST woes.
According to recent internet reports, Nissan could locally manufacture its popular Leaf and introduce at an aggressive price range. The Leaf has been around for several years now and it has been well-received in European as well as other foreign markets. As the outgoing generation Leaf gets to the closing stages of its lifespan, Nissan is expected to consider the brand new Leaf for India.
Much to the excitement and months of speculations, its global premiere has happened as Nissan has the Leaf significantly upgraded in terms of efficiency and design language. The sales of Leaf have crossed over 2.5 lakh examples in its seven year lifecycle. It will be targetting even bigger figures with the new generation model. Ahead of the debut, it had gradually been teased with some of its features like the innovative e-Pedal driving that gained more interest.
It uses regenerative braking to accelerate, decelerate and stop the vehicle via a single pedal. Activated with a switch, it shows how well automakers are adapting the regenerative tech like the Chevrolet Bolt EV and even Tesla models managing them cleverly. To the excitement of EV enthusiasts, Nissan India has already been reported to have confirmed its local testing and is cautious over increased pricing if brought into the country through CBU route. This could only mean the local production is on the cards.
Nissan Leaf will act as a learning tool for understanding the electric vehicle market but considering the quirky nature of our local customers it might have to come up with something new for India. On a longer perspective, Nissan might create a low-cost EV that would fit to the mileage needs in a volume segment.
Nissan has recently announced a low-cost EV for China and the knowledge learned there could be transferred to India. In two battery modes – 24 kWh and 30 kWh – the outgoing Nissan Leaf returned range of 228 km and 280 km respectively. However, it is a whole different story on the freshed up version.
We believe it could be showcased at the 2018 Auto Expo where Hyundai may debut its Ioniq hybrid. The restyled new Leaf vows to capitalise on the success of its predecessor emulating superlative levels of global sales. The leaf has been criticised for its bland looks and Nissan has addressed the form factor in the new model with well-defined cuts and creases along the body bringing a more matured stance.
It gains new set of headlamps and taillights, faux front grille, thick C-pillars, sporty silhouette and is said to be more aerodynamically efficient offering better driving stability and performance. The 2018 Leaf will make its premiere at the Frankfurt Motor Show and it will be up for grabs in Japan next month before reaching the United States, Canada and Europe in early 2018. Prices will start at $29,990 (Rs. 19.22 lakh) before incentives in the US.
It gets powered by a 40 kWh lithium-ion battery pack linked to an electric motor producing 147 horsepower and 320 Nm of peak torque. Nissan’s EPA-estimated range is at 150 miles (242 km) in the US while in European it is rated to have cruising range of 235 miles (378 km). The charging time of the battery is 16 hours via a 3 kW plug, 8 hours on a 6 kW plug amidst the quick charging function enabling 80 per cent battery in just 40 minutes.
The new-gen Leaf boasts several advanced technologies like ProPILOT and single-lane autonomous driving tech. It automatically controls the distance to the vehicle in front at speeds between 30 kmph and 100 kmph. It steers the vehicle and ensures remaining at the centre of the lane. When necessary, it can bring the Leaf to a complete stop and reactivating the ProPILOT is simple with the touch of the accelerator.
The autonomous parking function uses 12 ultrasonic sensors to guide the Leaf into a parking space. The quirky standard e-Pedal system, claimed to be used for more than 90 percent of driving conditions, allows driver to accelerate, decelerate, stop and hold through the accelerator pedal.
Other stuffed technology list includes Intelligent Lane Intervention, Traffic Sign Recognition, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Intelligent Around View Monitor, Lane Departure Warning, Intelligent Emergency Braking and Blind Spot Warning among others.
India-Bound 2018 Nissan Leaf EV Images