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Joel Patel
Automotive Editor - April 1, 2019

Expert Rating

3.5 (Good)
120 City / 97 Highway

Unlike other websites and magazines, our ratings are not based solely on a singular road test, but rather a more encompassing batch of criteria: quality, safety, comfort, performance, fuel economy, reliability history and value. When comparing vehicles using our Rating System, it's important to note that the rating earned by each vehicle correlates only to the models within its class. For example, a compact car cannot be compared to a SUV—They are different vehicles altogether.

You can interpret our ratings in the following way:

5-Star: Outstanding vehicle. Only the most exceptional vehicles achieve this rating.

4-Star: Very Good vehicle. Very good and close to being the best vehicle in its class.

3-Star: Good vehicle. Decent, but not quite the best. Often affordable, but lacking key features found in vehicles of the same class.

2-Star: Below average vehicle. Not recommended, and lacking attributes a car buyer would come to expect for the price.

1-Star: Poor vehicle. Simply does not deserve to be on the road.


The Nissan Leaf was one of the first mass-produced electric vehicles to go on sale. Nissan unveiled the car back in 2011, and a lot has changed since then, including the addition of a long-range Leaf Plus model. With more range than before, more high-tech safety features, and a more stylish design, the 2019 Nissan Leaf and 2019 Nissan Leaf Plus, make strong cases for themselves. Not to mention, the regular Leaf is cheaper than a lot of its competitors.

What's New for 2019

After a redesign last year, not much changes for the standard 2019 Leaf. The big news is the introduction of the Leaf Plus, which has more range, power, and standard equipment than the standard model. Nissan has also added their Rear Door Alert safety feature, which warns drivers to double check the rear seats before exiting the vehicle, as standard.

Nissan Leaf

Choosing Your Nissan LEAF

The Leaf, which Nissan claims is still the best-selling electric vehicle of all time, features a lithium-ion battery pack and an electric motor. The 40-kWh lithium-ion battery pack provides the Leaf with a range of up to 150 miles on a single charge, according to the EPA. The vehicle's 110-kW electric motor provides a decent amount of power, as it's rated at 147 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque.

New for 2019 is the Leaf Plus, which features a 62-kWh lithium-ion battery pack that boasts a range of 226 miles on a single charge. Power for the Leaf Plus comes from a 160-kW electric motor that pumps out 214 hp and 250 lb-ft of torque.

These are noticeable increases over the regular Leaf and greatly improve the model’s ability to get to 60 mph, reducing the figure by a second over the standard version. Nissan also claims that the Leaf Plus is 13 percent quicker when it comes to passing at speeds from 50 to 70 mph than the regular model.

When it comes to charge times, both the Leaf and the Leaf Plus have the same 6.6-kW onboard charger. Filling up with a Level 2 connection takes 7.5 hours with the 40-kWh model and 11.5 hours with the 62-kWh battery pack. The Leaf Plus, though, can handle charging at stations with a 100-kW DC quicker charger, which allows the battery to get up to 80 percent of its charge in 45 minutes.

Both the Leaf and the Leaf Plus have an e-Pedal feature that allows for one-pedal braking. The feature also allows for a higher level of regenerative braking, letting drivers regenerate miles without touching the brake pedal.

Nissan's e-Pedal feature isn't the only trick the Leaf has up its sleeve, as it also has the Japanese automaker's ProPilot Assist system as an option. The semi-autonomous system can automatically keep a safe distance from any vehicles driving in front of it, keep the vehicle within its lane, and brake on its own. All of the latest safety features, including blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, a surround-view camera, and lane departure warning are present, as well.

There are three Leaf trims and three Leaf Plus trims available:


The entry-level Leaf S starts at $30,885 (all prices include an $895 destination charge). Standard exterior features include 16-inch steel wheels, a rear spoiler, automatic headlights, and power exterior mirrors. On the inside, the S trim comes with a 5-inch color display, a 7-inch information display in the instrument cluster, a rearview monitor, Bluetooth, a tilt steering column, automatic temperature control, cloth upholstery, a four-speaker audio system, and a six-way manually adjustable driver's seat.

Two major packages are offered for the Leaf S. The All Weather Package ($450) adds heated front seats, a heated steering wheel, heated exterior mirrors, and rear underseat heater ducts. The Charge Package S ($1,590) brings a quick charge port and a 240-volt portable charging cable.

S Plus

The S Plus is the most affordable way to get into the longer range model. It starts at $37,445 and, in addition to the larger 62-kWh battery, comes with an 8-inch touchscreen and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as standard over the base S model. The only available package is the All Weather Package ($450).


Moving up to the SV trim, which starts at $33,385, brings 17-inch alloy wheels, navigation, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, NissanConnect services, fog lights, a seven-inch touchscreen, and adaptive cruise control over the standard S.

The All Weather Package ($900) also includes a hybrid heater system in addition to the equipment it added on the S trim. The Technology Package ($2,200) brings ProPilot Assist, an eight-way power adjustable driver's seat, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, a universal garage door opener, LED headlights, LED daytime running lights, the 240-volt portable charge cable, automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, blind-spot monitoring, an electronic parking brake, high beam assist, lane keeping assist, and rear cross-traffic alert.

SV Plus

The mid-level SV Plus costs $39,405 also gets navigation, 17-inch wheels, fog lights, NissanConnect services, and adaptive cruise control. It adds a leather-wrapped steering wheel and two additional speakers, as well. Available packages for the SV Plus mimic the ones found on the regular SV, but the the Technology Package is cheaper at $1,800.


Pricing for the standard SL trim starts at $37,095. Standard features over lower trims include LED headlights, LED daytime running lights, leather-appointed seats, a 240-volt portable charge cable, a six-way power driver's seat, a seven-speaker Bose audio system, heated side mirrors with integrated turn signal indicators, heated front seats, a heated steering wheel, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, a cargo cover, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, a surround-view monitor, a hybrid heater, and rear heater ducts.

The only available package is the Technology Package ($650), which adds lane keeping assist, high beam assist, an electronic parking brake, automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, and ProPilot Assist.

SL Plus

The range-topping SL Plus carries a price tag of $43,445. Over the regular SL, the SL Plus gets the equipment from the SL's Technology Package and an eight-way power driver's seat as standard. There are no available packages for the SL Plus.

CarsDirect Tip

One of the strongest upsides of the 2019 Nissan Leaf is its affordable price tag, and now buyers can also choose the 2019 Nissan Leaf Plus with its longer range. The SV trim is reasonably priced and comes with a good list of features. Adding the Technology Package ensures that you get the latest safety features and some convenience ones, too.

Get your price on a Nissan LEAF »

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