2012 Nissan Leaf
  • 2012 Nissan Leaf
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  • 2012 Nissan Leaf
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  • 2012 Nissan Leaf
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  • 2012 Nissan Leaf
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Nissan
is apparently past the problems that plagued sales of its all-electric Leaf earlier past year and is likely to either surpass or be close to matching its 2011 sales numbers for November and December, according to a company executive at the Los Angeles Auto Show.

Nissan ran into supply issues after it expanded distribution to all 50 states from seven earlier this year. That meant that California, which accounts for about 60 percent of US Leaf sales, was short on inventory, Nissan North America spokesman David Reuter told AutoblogGreen.

"We starved the California market a bit, and that impacted our sales," said Reuter, adding that many states scaled back on EV incentives for 2012. For November and December, "we'll be much closer to parity compared to calendar year 2011," Reuter said.

As for 2013 upgrades, Reuter didn't give details on performance improvements, but he did say that the Leaf would "continue to advance from a technological standpoint." Nissan also expects to start producing US Leafs at its Smyrna, TN, factory, within the next couple of months.

Through October, Nissan's 6,791 Leaf sales were 16 percent lower than the same time period in 2011, but October's monthly sales were up 86 percent from a year earlier. September sales were almost even.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 38 Comments
      Joeviocoe
      • 2 Years Ago
      Just as many people confuse Supply with availability (as you've done here). People also, consistently, confuse the term Demand with number of sales. The see the price first, and make a determination of Demand based on number of sales at that price. Demand is a CURVE. It curves down to the right. And is fully independent of price! Not that there isn't still a relationship to price.... because price is set using both supply and demand curves. But once again, price is computed last. Demand (a curve, not a single value like sales) doesn't actually change when the price goes down. The number of sales goes up, but Demand (as a curve) already includes those higher values. These are two of the most common economic fallacies I see here. Annoying, but then again, economic terms aren't intuitive really.
      Rotation
      • 2 Years Ago
      Is there any reason you are printing this nonsense? The reason the LEAF is not selling better in California is not supply. You can get one off the lot at any dealer in my area of Northern California, and this is the area where the LEAF sells best (I see a dozen a day). Honestly, I still see the car doing fine. But bogus excuses are bogus excuses.
        Joeviocoe
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Rotation
        Yes, that is the definition. But how you got your conclusion, is simply wrong. Being able to find Leafs on California Dealership lots does NOT prove unconstrained supply.
        DaveMart
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Rotation
        Joe: 'In economics, supply is the amount of some product producers are willing and able to sell at a given price all other factors being held constant. Usually, supply is plotted as a supply curve showing the relationship of price to the amount of product businesses are willing to sell.' http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supply_%28economics%29 So at the price that the Leaf is offered at, including some very cheap lease deals, there is no shortage of supply.
        Joeviocoe
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Rotation
        " You can get one off the lot at any dealer " To anyone who has taken an economics class... that makes no sense. Since that is NOT the definition of supply. The cars are "available", yes. But supply is still constrained. And this makes those vehicles that are available, more expensive to sell.
          SVX pearlie
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Joeviocoe
          First, the car needs to sell out. That's not what's been happening. If the car doesn't sell, then inability to replenish stock is meaningless. It just becomes a slow-selling failure of a car.
          Joeviocoe
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Joeviocoe
          "First, the car needs to sell out." Nope, it doesn't. The fore knowledge that dealers have, knowing the costs and time needed to get those Leafs... means they will want keep the car's price high... because if they "sold out"... that means they set the price too low, and missed out on profit. The seller wants to hit a sweet spot, where they are NOT selling out completely and quickly (because they could have gotten a higher price)... and cars sitting on the lot way longer than it would have taken to sell them, and to receive new stock from the manufacturer.
          Joeviocoe
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Joeviocoe
          As I explained below... "availability" at dealerships is NOT synonymous with "Supply". It may be the only thing you see... but there are many cases when supply is constrained, which keeps prices high, but availability is not constrained. ------------- "Given how often Ghosn lies about the Leaf," Right, we've already established your emotional hatred for Nissan already. But do you really need to resort to Ad Hominem attacks on the CEO? What did he "lie" about exactly? That 100% of every Leaf built would be flawless? Every CEO, Politician, hell every public figure, especially those trying to gain money/power... lie. Well fudge the truth. Flirting with the line that would get someone fired or arrested. What ever you 'think' he lied about, I am sure your favorite auto CEO had done similar too.
          SVX pearlie
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Joeviocoe
          Spending large sums on platform costs to keep overpriced cars on the lot is a stupid idea. Dealers work new cars on churn, and they won't be holding stock until they get down the last 1 or 2 cars. And when they run out, they source from other dealers. And even if they can't get a new Leaf, they can move another Maxima. Here in SoCal, there are at least 50 used Nissan Leaf and 160 new Nissan Leaf - a total in excess of of 210 Nissan Leaf in the metro. Are you seriously telling me that all 200+ cars are being marked up in anticipation of inability to restock, despite Fontana listing at $27k and Connell listing at $31k, with nobody listing over MSRP? And up where Rotation lives, there are 182 new Leaf and 30 used, again 210+ in the SF metro, and none carrying ADP / ADM being tacked on to drive price above MSRP. By comparison, there are 98 new Volt in SF and 240 new Volt in SoCal. The Volt outsells the Leaf by a considerable margin, yet has lower stock, especially up north. It's a lack of demand, not supply.
          SVX pearlie
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Joeviocoe
          If 1 or 2 Leaf were available in the entire SF metro, you might be correct. If there are several Leaf at each of the dealership, then there is no supply issue. Given how often Ghosn lies about the Leaf, the facts on the ground (100+ day supply) is what matters, and claiming "constrained" supplies is just another lie.
          Joeviocoe
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Joeviocoe
          I good example of when supply is constrained and observed end point availability is not. A product that must go through many complicated and expensive steps, travel far, take a long time, and is delivered in bursts... from the point of production, to the point of sale. When a supply chain is NOT fully developed, dealerships may have A DOZEN OF LEAFS sitting on the Lot... but when they are sold, it may take 10 times longer to get those Leafs replaced with new ones from the Oppama, Japan factory... than it would take to get another model from either their 3 U.S. factories or their 2 Mexico factories. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nissan_Motor_Company#Manufacturing_locations So what LOOKS like an abundance of supply,... is NOT!!! There is a whole supply chain that is too complicated for you to see as you drive past your Nissan Dealership. Other cars, especially domestically produced (or Mexico)... have a MUCH more streamlined supply chain. With ONLY Oppama making Leafs, and the rest of the world soaking up much of the supply... YES, supply is constrained!
      Peter
      • 2 Years Ago
      The Leaf is doing well. While some would spin the Volt the clear early adoptive winner (another fine car), that's only true in North America. World wide the Leaf is leading. For NA the range/value may be suboptimal for EV only sales in the US. I agree that either the price has to come down or the range increases (or both in different models a la Tesla) as is rumored to occur for 2013.
        DaveMart
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Peter
        They are only recently starting sales of the Volt outside of the US so the comparison of world sales is invalid.
          DaveMart
          • 2 Years Ago
          @DaveMart
          For the Volt supply really has been constrained, and only tiny sales have been attempted outside the US, and none at all in Japan, for instance, one of the major markets for the Leaf.
          Joeviocoe
          • 2 Years Ago
          @DaveMart
          "non-USDM sales of Volt/Ampera sales were limited by constrained supply " Did anybody question that when Amperas were available on Opel lots?
          Joeviocoe
          • 2 Years Ago
          @DaveMart
          Not in France.
          Joeviocoe
          • 2 Years Ago
          @DaveMart
          Including the Ampera, they have been selling outside the U.S. since mid 2011. Not just 'recently'. And even when including the Ampera branding, Leaf sales beat the Volt Globally. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chevrolet_Volt#Global_sales
          Joeviocoe
          • 2 Years Ago
          @DaveMart
          Japanese automarkets are tougher than the U.S. for foreign importers, that is clear. So constrained supply is a valid excuse for the Volt, but not the Leaf? Supply is more than just the visible (can I find one at the dealership)... and has many factors that effect things differently along the entire supply chain.
          SVX pearlie
          • 2 Years Ago
          @DaveMart
          non-USDM sales of Volt/Ampera sales were limited by constrained supply (esp. Ampera), and closed market. Where the Volt and Leaf compete head-to-head (i.e. everywhere except JDM), globally, the Volt is clearly winning.
      Marcopolo
      • 2 Years Ago
      Nissan's Leaf is certainly having a difficult time gaining broad acceptance. Still, I'm glad to see Nissan supporting it's small, pioneering EV with technical improvements and local manufacture. I wish Nissan's Leaf success, after all it has sold nearly 50,000 units world wide, a figure unimaginable for an EV, only a few years ago !
      Joeviocoe
      • 2 Years Ago
      "Fancy footwork doesn't change the fact that there are plenty of Leaf cars available at the price being asked." It is not fancy footwork... it is economic laymen using terms improperly. When an automaker says supply constraints, you erroneously think of end product availability in stores... not about the entire upstream chain of supply... which can effect the price, even when availability of the end product is high. ---------------- "It really is as simple as that." Over-simplifying a complex system is how economies bust. You cannot confuse the terms weather and climate! You cannot measure the weather, in the here and now... and declare that the climate is known, and that "It really is as simple as that.".
      Joeviocoe
      • 2 Years Ago
      Demand curves actually increase (moves to the right) if the car itself improves (either factually or precieved), or if the product it replaces has a reduction in its demand curve (i.e. gasoline prices spike). Supply curves increase (moves to the right, lowering effective price) if components become cheaper to build and/or ship to destination, labor becomes cheaper, fewer expenses (tariffs), R&D amortization completion, etc. This should happen with the shift to domestic production. But it will take a while (maybe over a year) before this effect trickles down to consumers.
      DaveMart
      • 2 Years Ago
      Actually Joe I am reasonably well informed on economics. Fancy footwork doesn't change the fact that there are plenty of Leaf cars available at the price being asked. Incidentally at the level of supply there is no effective difference between leasing and buying. If they halved the price of the lease, there would then be a 'supply shortage' At the present price, leased or to buy, there isn't. It really is as simple as that.
      Spec
      • 2 Years Ago
      I saw 5 Leafs today. There are lots of them in Silicon Valley.
      Joeviocoe
      • 2 Years Ago
      Oh, and the way you and many people think of the word supply, is not how automakers and economists think of it. You're thinking end product supply (as in consumer availability). "So at the price that the Leaf is offered at, ... there is no shortage of supply" For some reason, you think that the supply is set by the price. " relationship of price to the amount of product businesses are willing to sell.'" It is a relationship, but you've got it backwards, ... supply and demand curves intersect to SET the price. The price comes last, after everything else is done. "including some very cheap lease deals, " Leases are not classic economics. They are not the same as selling price... since the automaker actually retains the property. Which is why you see so many "lease-only" concept cars that never make it to market even though the lease cost is affordable. An automaker sets the Lease price by different metrics than supply. Demand plays a part, but mostly expenses. The supply never leaves their ledger. And if 3rd party companies are leasing, it's about the same. The end-user is shielded from purchase prices set by Supply, since the car isn't really sold. ---------------- Bottom line... there are many reasons why you can have plenty of availability at dealerships... but still have supply constraints. Especially in any well-regulated market with rules that apply to dealerships to keep a certain number of stock on hand, the need for serviceability, dealer incentives (other than for sales), etc. The lower lease price certainly is an incentive to keep lots of stock, while not being a product of the Supply Curve. Also, the production chain is not a single linear function. Their are many branches and forks, and international considerations too. Normally, this would effect how many widgets would be available at a store. But the automotive markets are different and they react immediately to the fluctuations upstream. And we don't know if every CA dealer has available Leaf stock on hand, or just a selected few anecdotes. It is like denying global warming because a few people get a blizzard.
      noevfud
      • 2 Years Ago
      The high LEAF sales are because of huge incentives, noting else. I know I hear about the deals daily.
        Joeviocoe
        • 2 Years Ago
        @noevfud
        Yeah, it is common to report Leases as Sales. Which help boost confidence in the company/product. But it is much easier to give out cheap leases without taking a big hit, than it is to actually sell for much cheaper. It's NOT a gimmick to give great lease deals... but it is also NOT an indication of lower production costs or future sales prices.
        JakeY
        • 2 Years Ago
        @noevfud
        I agree. With the recent negative press on the Leaf's battery durability and the new model year coming up, I would expect sales to be down. The year end incentives are playing a large part in driving sales (as they normally do).
      Michael Walsh
      • 2 Years Ago
      Yeah. Not so exclusive, Danny my man. Beat you in reporting this by a whole day on mynissanleaf.com.
      SVX pearlie
      • 2 Years Ago
      "For November and December, "we'll be much closer to parity compared to calendar year 2011," Um, that means that Nissan lost momentum, just like they did after their big push Jun '11 (1,708). - Nov '11 = 672 - Dec '11 = 954 - Oct '12 = 1,579 If Nissan closes 2012 like they closed 2011, then they're only going to move 8,417 cars for the year, rather than the 10k that they would have had if they had simply maintained momentum like Chevy. Nissan Leaf sales will have dropped -13% down from last year, and still will not have cracked 10k units in any calendar year. OTOH, mid-year newcomer Toyota will notch roughly 14k PIP, and Chevy will take home the crown with 25k, possibly 27k cars. 2013 is a much tougher year with the new Ford Energi products & Accord PHEV announced, to say nothing of adding the Chevy Spark & Fiat 500e as a direct competitors. IMO, the situation looks pretty grim for Nissan, and I've got no idea how Ghosn can even try to put a positive spin on it.
        chanonissan
        • 2 Years Ago
        @SVX pearlie
        Nissan new leaf will have more range than the ford ev and it have 14 percent improvement on the 80 percent charge bring it to 83-84 miles. lets us see the chevy range and the fait range then we can do a better comparision.
          SVX pearlie
          • 2 Years Ago
          @chanonissan
          @ATC - Excellent post. +1 It appears you've done a real-world curve fit of battery decay against Arrhenius' Law. Thank you. Thanks for sharing the basis for the Leaf sales being continued MY2012 closeout. If the 2013 battery is the same as 2012, and Nissan is already using 93% of the potential capacity, then there is no way they can get +14% additional usage out of the pack - they would have to be below 86% for that to happen.
          ATC blog Afganistan
          • 2 Years Ago
          @chanonissan
          I have posted a link to a range chart with actual performance of the 2011-2012 Nissan LEAF. Yes, with a brand new battery at 70F degrees (21C) or warmer, the LEAF can go 100 miles at about 50mph steady speed on level, dry roads with no heat or air conditioning, or an economy of about 4.8 miles per kWh for around town. The car will lose approximately 10% of its battery capacity in its first year or two, and lose substantially more than that in extremely hot climates like Phoenix. I have posted a link of testing we provided in Phoenix on the heat induced battery degradation issues with one car at 30% range reduction in less than two years. In addition to degradation, the battery will lose capacity in cold weather, at a rate of approximately 1% per 4F degrees below 70F. Therefore, a 30F degree battery will lose approximately 10% capacity. Finally, heater use can DRASTICALLY lower the LEAF's economy. There is no way that these cars are limited in sales in the USA because of supply. Nissan has the price lowered to reflect many months of USA supply. They intend to release the USA built 2013 LEAF in February or March, so they need to unload these 2012 cars. There are lots of great deals out there. The new LEAF won't go 14% farther for 2013. It might go a tiny distance farther, perhaps an EPA rating of 75 to 79 miles. Like is so frequently the case from Nissan, they don't exactly tell the truth about LEAF specifications. A 2012 LEAF won't go 200 km (124 miles) in Japan, and it won't go 250km (142 miles) for 2013. The battery will be the same in 2013 as 2011-12. This quote may clear things up, from a high level executive at Nissan in Japan: "if you put a US LEAF, next to a Japan LEAF, next to a Euro LEAF, and each is equipped the same, and each has the same charge, they will travel the same distance. The only difference is the window sticker mileage value. Each country requires a different testing protocol, and this is how it appears that a LEAF in Japan travels farther. It's simply not the case." The heat pump option for 2013 doesn't make a car go farther; it merely reduces the amount of energy that would be lost to heating the cabin. http://www.mynissanleaf.com/viewtopic.php?p=101293#p101293 http://insideevs.com/all-the-results-from-the-largest-independent-test-of-nissan-leafs-with-lost-capacity-not-instrument-failure/
          SVX pearlie
          • 2 Years Ago
          @chanonissan
          Right now, Nissan gets 73 miles EPA mixed use at 100% charge. To say that it'll get 83 miles, we'll have to see what the actual EPA rating will be. But given how often Nissan comes up short prior to actual testing, I'm not inclined to give them the benefit of the doubt.
        sandos
        • 2 Years Ago
        @SVX pearlie
        More differentiation in the plugin-area hopefully means that plugins will take a much larger market-share. It will still be tough for the Leaf, I'm sure.
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