The Nissan Leaf has proven to be popular in the West Coast, and now is gaining a good ground in the east. According to Nissan, it Leaf electric vehicle has gained ground in recent months in Virginia, Georgia and Washington, D.C., as well as in St. Louis, Missouri. Brendan Jones, director of electric vehicle infrastructure strategy for Nissan North America, Georgia's aggressive push to create a positive "EV lifestyle equation" is paying dividends in Atlanta.
He noted that a number of deal sweeteners for potential Leaf customer are creating constructive sales environment. Jones cited as an instance Georgia's tax credit for zero-emissions vehicles of up to $5,000. Georgia also set aside tolls for Leaf drivers in high occupancy vehicle lanes and some high occupancy lanes.
Nissan is getting thrilled on Leaf's improving prospects on the area, but has to do more than just sell the EV. Nissan also has to build loyalty by creating a convenient driving experience for Leaf owners.
Nissan sold 9,839 Leafs in the first half of 2013, reflecting a 213-percent increase over the same period in 2012. Nissan is also nearing 30,000 sales in the US since it launched the Leaf in the market in 2010.
The company intends to keep this sales pace by enhancing public charging infrastructure for the Leaf, which would help lessen range concerns among potential buyers still wavering to jump onto the EV bandwagon.
Additional public charging infrastructure could also provide a good reason for current Leaf drivers to make another product purchase in the future. Nissan has partnered with NRG Energy Services to install 40 DC fast charging units in Washington.
Underpinned by a bespoke EV platform, the new Nissan Leaf measures 4,445 mm in length, 1,770 mm in width and 1,550 mm in height, and features a wheelbase of 2,700 mm. Donning a highly aerodynamic shape, the new Leaf remains almost basically the same at its predecessor, but with some enhancements. These include changes to the grille and a new 17-inch wheel design that could reduce the Leaf’s coefficient of drag to just 0.28 Cd.
Just like its predecessor, the new Leaf features slim and nearly vertical headlights, with higher versions of the EV employing LED units. These headlights are designed in a way that they could guide airflow away from the door mirrors, thereby reducing wind noise and at the same time helping aerodynamics.
Designed employing Nissan's 'smart fluidity' principle, the new Nissan Leaf features an aerodynamic body defined by a kicked-up roofline, a large spoiler and a flat, smooth underfloor. When viewed from the rear, the new Leaf reveals sleek vertical taillights, and the notable absence of tailpipes.
For the latest version of the Leaf, Nissan added more colors to the exterior finish choices. Customers could now pick from any of the seven exterior colors: black metallic, blue pearl metallic, grey, metallic silver, red pearl metallic, solid white and white pearl.
Inside, the new Nissan Leaf features a number of changes, including new seats that have been redesigned to offer better support. Interestingly, the front seats now feature height adjustment and have been reshaped to offer up to 53-mm more leg room for rear passengers. Nissan re-profiled the front seats to allow rear passengers to place their feet underneath them, resulting to more leg room.