• Feb 28, 2013

Nissan
has got your "range extender" right here. The Japanese automaker says its UK-produced all-electric 2013 Leaf will have a single-charge range of 124 miles, or about 14 percent more than the Japan-produced 2012 Leafs that had a 109-mile single-charge range.

Better still, Nissan's again cutting the price of the entry-level Euro-Leaf to about 2,000 euros ($2,620) less than the mid-priced Leaf, the publication says, citing a person at Nissan familiar with the process. Nissan last month said it would reduce the Leaf price in the UK by almost $4,000 to about $37,000.

Despite the price drop, the 2013 Euro Leaf gets better range because of a variety of optimizations – or optimisations, depending – to the motor, aerodynamics (a new grille and wheel design, for example) and "weight, brake regeneration and energy use." The new Leaf has a better coefficient of drag, by 0.01, compared to the 2012 model, which Nissan calls, "a small but useful improvement." The improved regenerative brakes can now recover a higher percentage of energy (94 percent compared to 88 percent before) and now also works all the way down to three kilometers an hour. Larger trunk space, a better ride and the option of a faster charger are also among improvements for this year's Leaf in Europe. The 2013 Leaf was also improved in Japan and the US.

Last year, the Leaf missed its European sales target of 9,000 units by about 3,800 cars. Earlier this month, Nissan said its global Leaf sales surpassed the 50,000-unit threshold, including about 7,000 Leafs in Europe and almost 20,000 in the US.


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