Why are Nissan Leafs so cheap?

So I need a new car and I’d prefer it to be electric, but my finances are tight. I was looking at the Nissan Leaf, and was surprised at the price—what makes Nissan Leafs so affordable?

Jason Tushinski · Updated on
Reviewed by Shannon Martin, Licensed Insurance Agent.
Switching to an electric vehicle is exciting, and you are right—the Nissan Leaf is much cheaper than other electrics on the market. Why, you ask? Unfortunately, the Nissan Leaf doesn’t enjoy the best reputation, even if they are decent cars overall. Some of the factors contributing to the Leaf’s low price include low battery range, depreciation, government incentives, outdated technology, and uninspiring design.
  • Low battery range: On a new Leaf, the battery range is only 80 to 100 miles per charge, and this drops to around 50 miles per change on a used Leaf. While the Leaf’s battery is cheaper to manufacture, its small size means a definite lack of power compared to other electric vehicles.
  • Depreciation: The Leaf’s typical depreciation is lower than most other electrics, meaning the Leaf loses its value more slowly than pricier cars. For example, a Tesla typically loses about 20% of its value over the first year of ownership.
  • Government incentives: There are several government incentives and subsidies available when purchasing a Leaf, depending on the state you live in. These perks make the Leaf more affordable to buy, allowing you to pay down a loan in a shorter time frame.
  • Outdated technology: The Leaf may be cheap to buy, but its technology hasn’t been updated much since the Leaf first rolled off the line in 2010, especially compared to the technological arms race being waged by other electric car makers.
  • Design: The Leaf, while not a bad looking car, isn’t winning design awards left and right. This has arguably played a role in the model’s slow sales—and thus spurring price cuts.
Depending on your budget, a Nissan Leaf can be just the right car for you. Whatever your choice, make sure you insure your vehicle with a robust
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