A lot of speculation has been circling around the rumor that Nissan’s flagship EV, the LEAF, may be turning into a compact SUV. Nissan’s European boss, Guillaume Cartier, has confirmed that a new electric crossover is planned to be built at their Sunderland factory in the U.K. Slated for the 2025 model year, this design would be part of the third generation of the LEAF and will be Nissan’s fifth electric SUV, but there is one thing we aren’t certain of.
It’s not clear whether or not this new vehicle will be the next generation of the LEAF or a separate vehicle that will be replacing the LEAF in Nissan’s lineup entirely. Our guess is that it will be a complete redesign, switching body style from a hatchback to an SUV, that will retain the model name LEAF. However, this isn’t a guarantee, as many are referring to this new EV as the LEAF’s replacement. For now, we’ll call it the 2025 LEAF.
As we mentioned above, the most notable difference about the 2025 LEAF is going to be its change from a hatchback to a compact crossover SUV. This change could be a sign that Nissan is shifting its attention away from making sedans and hatchbacks to crossovers and SUVs. While we don’t know what the design lines of this vehicle will look like, it is likely to be based on the CMF-EV platform from the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance. Aside from that, we don’t know how similar or different in appearance it may be from Nissan’s other electric SUVs, the Juke, the Qashqai, the Ariya, and the X-Trail.
Nissan plans to have its full lineup be electric or have an E-power hybrid option by 2025 and aims to have its sales be 80% electric by 2030. With that said, it will be diverting their focus from internal combustion engines to make the brand complaint with emission regulations that are soon to come in Europe. Nissan CEO Makoto Uchida has stated that the automaker won’t be looking into hydrogen technology and will keep to battery-powered vehicles. Though there hasn’t been any confirmation on what kind of battery the 2025 LEAF will be using, Uchida hinted that he may release some information on Nissan’s electrification plans later on this year.