Published: Fri, September 08, 2017
Hi-Tech | By Joan Schultz

New Leaf Right Package at Right Price, Nissan Exec Says

New Leaf Right Package at Right Price, Nissan Exec Says

Hiroto Saikawa, president and CEO of Nissan, told global media that he is confident that sales of the Leaf would double with the new model, and hopes that the figure could even triple. You have autonomous drive technology, a new battery, new powertrain. It allows the drivers to accelerate, deaccelerate and stop using just one pedal.

The updated Leaf joins the growing ranks of electric vehicles with extended ranges, made possible by lower battery prices.

Nissan includes a short statement saying, "For those who want more excitement and performance, Nissan will also offer a new higher power, longer range version at a higher price for the 2019 model year". "It also has the core strengths that will be embodied by future Nissan models".

When you come off the accelerator pedal, the brakes are applied automatically, gradually bringing the vehicle to a complete stop. Nissan's smartphone app, meanwhile, will allow Leaf owners to pre-heat or cool the vehicle before they get in.

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The new look incorporates Nissan's V-Motion grille and "Boomerang" front light signature, which gives the vehicle a familiar look to the rest of the brand's range. Prices in Japan will start from 3.15 million yen ($28,992). This should provide the Leaf with upwards of 200 miles of range, Nissan says, putting it on par with the Bolt and Model 3 ranges.

The second-generation Leaf was unveiled simultaneously on Tuesday in Japan and Las Vegas and Wednesday morning here at the first Technology in Motion mobility conference at Cobo Center. Tesla Inc. launched its entrant into the mass market in July, the Model 3, priced at $35,000 before the federal tax credit and with a starting range of 220 miles.

Optional on the upper two trims will be intelligent lane intervention, blind-spot warning, rear cross-traffic alert, intelligent cruise control and ProPilot Assist for semi-autonomous driving.

100% electric vehicle most sold in the country for several years, the Leaf now is aging and its autonomy of 172 kilometers is no more weight against the new models such as the Chevrolet Bolt, the Hyundai Ioniq, or the Volkswagen e-Golf.

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Will Chevrolet respond by adjusting the price of the Bolt EV, just as the Volt plug-in got price cuts after its initial release? Should traffic come to a complete stop, ProPilot will return to following the auto in front when you push the activation button or lightly press the accelerator.

You can reserve the 2018 Leaf and you will lock in a free gift of a Google Home with a Nest thermostat, Apple Watch or Go Pro with purchase or lease of the 2018 Nissan Leaf.

We'll give the new Leaf a thorough going-over in the coming months, but in the meantime our man got behind the wheel of a prototype in Japan.

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