The 2020 Nissan Leaf vs 2020 Chevy Bolt, Which EV Is #1?

The Nissan Leaf and Chevy Bolt have been the two most affordable EVs on the market for years. Which one was best in 2020?
Written by Andrew Koole
Reviewed by Kathleen Flear
Jul 11, 2022
The transition to
electric vehicles is well underway
, but for those of us with tight budgets, the options remain slim. Still, there are a few affordable models, the cheapest of which are the Nissan Leaf and the Chevy Bolt. 
Both subcompact EVs are affordable by any standard, electric or otherwise, but because they’ve both been in production for a number of years, you can potentially save even more by buying
used models
To help in that department,
Jerry
, compared the 2020 Nissan Leaf to the 2020 Chevy Bolt. Hopefully, after looking at the result, you’ll have a better idea of what each car offers.

2020 Nissan Leaf

The 2020 Nissan Leaf might look like an economy car, but its punchy powertrain and agile handling make it more fun to drive than you might expect. 
Still, there are a few weaknesses resulting from the low price point. For one, the 2020 Leaf’s
estimated battery range
limits its level of functionality. The entry-level 40 kWh powertrain only lasts for 150 miles, while the Leaf Plus bumps that up to a slightly more reasonable 226 miles.
Really, the best thing the 2020 Nissan Leaf has going for it is its price. Brand new, the car started at $31,600, the lowest price for a fully electric car that year.
U.S. News
says that upgrading to the Plus only costs an extra $800. 
The used market this year is way out of whack, but U.S. News says you can still save $200 on the regular Leaf—and avoid the waiting list for a new one—by going with the 2020 model. 

2020 Chevy Bolt

When Chevrolet debuted the Bolt,
Kelley Blue Book
says it broke industry expectations by offering over 200 miles of range in a relatively affordable electric car. 
In 2020, that number was raised to 260 miles, continuing the $36,600 car’s reputation as the best balance of affordability and reliable range for an EV. 
But reliability is measured by more than a car’s ability to travel long distances, and the Chevy Bolt has had some very public mechanical issues—most notably, a
spontaneously combusting
battery pack. 
In October 2021, Chevy issued a recall for every Bolt produced for the 2017 and 2022 model years. Owners were told to charge their EVs outdoors, and a software quick-fix was implemented while the automaker produced enough batteries for a full replacement.

Which 2020 EV is better, the Nissan Leaf or the Chevy Bolt?

Plenty of factors that go into choosing a used car are subjective to each person’s specific needs. Where you live, what you use your car for, and how much you’re willing to pay for it all have a significant impact on what vehicle matches your lifestyle best. 
In the battle between the 2020 Nissan Leaf and the 2020 Chevy Bolt, some of those elements come into play. Anyone who travels long distances probably shouldn’t buy a Nissan Leaf, for example. But a few absolutes make this comparison pretty clear. 
With the ongoing recall on Chevy Bolts forcing drivers to keep their batteries charged above the 70-mile mark and plug-in outdoors, it seems irresponsible to encourage buyers to opt for a used one. 
Better to buy the cheaper new Chevy Bolt or wait until the automaker completes the repairs under the recall. Or, if it suits you, go with the less hassle-ridden Leaf.

Car insurance for your electric vehicle

No matter which vehicle you buy, you always need car insurance. A licensed broker that offers end-to-end support, the
Jerry
app gathers affordable quotes, helps you switch plans, and can even help you cancel your old policy. 
And to ensure you always have the lowest rate, Jerry will send you new quotes every time your policy comes up for renewal, so you’re always getting the coverage you want at the best price. The average Jerry user saves $887 a year on car insurance.
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National General
Allstate
AAA
Aig
Chubb
ClearCover
CSE
Dairyland
DirectAuto
Elephant Auto Insurance
Kemper
Libertymutual
Gainsco
Mapfre
Mercury Auto
Metromile
Nationwide
Plymouth Rock
Progressive
State Auto
Safeco
Travelers
Metlife
Bristol West

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