Pros: Impressively “normal” feel for an all-electric car; reasonably zippy acceleration; tax credits available; cheap running costs
Cons: Limited driving range, especially in cold weather; challenges of finding available charging stations; expense of home charger installation
CG Says: Were it a conventional or gas/electric hybrid compact car, the 2014 Nissan LEAF would be a decent value. It drives well and is reasonably practical. As a pure-electric car, however, it works exceptionally well. It’s certainly not for everyone. In ideal temperature and driving conditions, Nissan’s claimed range of 100 miles is realistic. In cold climates, though, that can be cut by up to half. This is not a vehicle you would take on a long road trip, but it’s an ideal urban/suburban commuter. Its price seems steep for a compact car, but various tax credits and cash rebates from federal, state, and local governments, as well as incentives offered by the private sector, can help defray the cost. Overall driving costs that can be measured in pennies-per-mile also help counter the initial outlay.