The 2019 model year will bring a high-power version with increased battery range.Nissan has revealed its next-generation Leaf, redesigned to better compete with fresh competition such as the Chevrolet Bolt and Tesla Model 3.The new Leaf integrates a 40-kWh battery, providing a 40-percent range increase to around 150 miles. The benchmark now falls in the middle of the pack, above the Hyundai Ioniq Electric (124 mi.), Honda Clarity (89 mi.) and BMW i3 (81 mi.), but short of the Chevrolet Bolt (238 mi.) and Tesla Model 3 (220-310 mi.).
Drivers will also be treated to a significant increase in power, with 147 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque available from a new electric motor. The car's chassis has also been refined for better stability, while the electric steering system has been revamped for a more linear feel.
Designers modernized the Leaf's exterior, dropping its quirky styling in favor of a more traditional look grounded by Nissan's characteristic V-Motion grille and floating roof.
Drivers will be able to accelerate, cruise, decelerate and stop via the single 'e-Pedal' system, offered as standard equipment on all trim levels. Simply removing the foot from the pedal initiates a 0.2g deceleration, eliminating the need to press the friction brake pedal in most situations.
Following an initial launch in Japan this year, the 2018 Leaf is scheduled to land in US showrooms early next year with a $30,875 price tag. Nissan promises to launch a high-power Leaf variant with even longer range for the 2019 model year.