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2016 Nissan Leaf EV Ups Distance Ante by 27% to 107 Miles

2016 Nissan Leaf EV Ups Distance Ante by 27% to 107 Miles

By Philly Murtha, September 10, 2015

Just a day after Toyota unveiled the new, fourth-generation 2016 Prius, Nissan introduced the 2016 Leaf EV hatchback, with a new 30-kWh battery that provides a driving range of up to 107 miles, according to the automaker. The new figure represents a 27% improvement over the car’s previous 84-mile range. The 5-door electric vehicle, which comes in three trim levels and is built in Smyrna, TN, also features an upgraded IT system for enhanced vehicle connectivity and is offered in three new exterior paint colors.

Nissan’s more powerful motor will be offered in the Leaf SV trim level, which has a suggested starting price of $26,700 (figuring in a federal tax credit of $7,500); and the SL trim level, which starts at $29,290 (after the federal tax credit). The current, lower-priced Leaf S, powered by the smaller 24-kWh battery pack, also will be available at $21,510 after the federal tax incentive.

In addition to offering the more powerful battery and connectivity enhancements for the SV and SL trim levels, Nissan will offer the 2016 model in three new exterior paint colors: Forged Bronze, Coulis Red and Deep Blue Pearl.

The 2016 Nissan Leaf SV adds the 30-kWh battery, an onboard charger, NissanConnect with navigation and a number of mobile apps, in addition to a 7-in. color display with multi-touch control, 6-speaker audio system, hybrid heater system, auto-dimming inside mirror, heated outside mirrors and steering wheel, partially recycled cloth seat fabric, and 17-in. aluminum alloy wheels. The 2016 Leaf SL adds a photovoltaic solar panel spoiler, fog lights, LED low-beam auto on/off headlights, cargo cover, leather-trimmed seats, heated rear seat, and cargo cover.

The new Leaf is powered by an 80-kW AC synchronous motor that produces 107 horsepower and 187 lb.-ft. of torque, with zero emissions. The 2016 Leaf SV and SL have MPGe ratings from the EPA of 124 city, 101 highway, and 112 combined, while the Leaf S has MPGe ratings of 126 city, 101 highway, and 114 combined.

All versions of the Nissan EV, including the S, come standard with Leaf audio and connectivity upgrades such as a hands-free phone system, streaming audio, USB port, and a display screen. The SV and SL trim levels are equipped with navigation, a larger 7-in. color display, voice recognition, and mobile apps for HD Radio and SiriusXM Travel link, plus USB ports and interfaces for devices. Screen graphics have been improved, and Nissan says charging information is automatically updated every time the vehicle’s ignition is turned on and after every 12 miles of driving.

Nissan introduced the Leaf to America at the end of 2010. In 2014, Nissan sold 30,200 Leaf EVs in the United States, based on data collected by J.D. Power and forecasting partner LMC Automotive. Through the first 8 months of 2015, Nissan Leaf sales in the United States were 12,383, down from 18,941 unit sales in the same period a year ago.

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