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IEVS: Consumer Reports Not Impressed By 2018 Nissan LEAF

Posted: Tue Aug 07, 2018 3:04 pm
by GRA
https://insideevs.com/consumer-reports-not-impressed-by-2018-nissan-leaf/

. . . According to Consumer Reports, the new LEAF offers little beyond an attractive price to distinguish it from its EV competitors so waiting for 60 kWh battery version (200+ miles) is advised.

There are several drawbacks to the current LEAF, mostly minor though:

    “Our Leaf delivered power smoothly when accelerating from a standstill, but it ran out of oomph at highway speeds.

    The mushy handling doesn’t inspire driver confidence, and the soft suspension can bottom out, sending a nasty thump to the cabin.

    We found the SL’s powered driver’s seat to be comfortable, helped by the adjustable lumbar support. The Leaf is missing a telescoping steering column to accommodate drivers of all sizes, and the center console rubs against the driver’s knee, which can be annoying.

    HIGHS: Low running costs, quietness, power delivery, access, standard automatic emergency braking
    LOWS: Charging times, driving position, agility, ride”

Re: IEVS: Consumer Reports Not Impressed By 2018 Nissan LEAF

Posted: Tue Aug 07, 2018 3:55 pm
by LeftieBiker
They seem to have driven it as a sports car. I've never bottomed out the suspension, and find the handling and ride fine, not mushy. I don't usually drive over 65MPH, so I can't comment on the 'lack of oomph at highway speeds.' The few times I've gone faster it seemed to accelerate fine.

Heh. I'm picturing them filling the car with office staff and then trying to race a Bolt.

Re: IEVS: Consumer Reports Not Impressed By 2018 Nissan LEAF

Posted: Tue Aug 07, 2018 4:54 pm
by RonDawg
Most electrics tend to run out of "oomph" at highway speeds anyway; you notice this when trying to pass a car doing 55 or so MPH when the speed limit is higher. Teslas are the significant exception to that, but you pay for it.

Most of the perceived power of an EV is down low due to a relatively high torque rating combined with a very flat torque curve. I've always told people that while the car does 0-30 very well, by the time it gets to about 60 it's mostly run out of breath.

Comparing my former Leaf to my current eGolf, while the Leaf was definitely easier to get in and out of, it definitely doesn't handle as well as the VW, and feels much more appliance-like. My 2012 with its greater use of aluminum definitely had a "tinny" feel to it when closing the doors.

I think Inside EV's is taking the CR report a bit harshly when they say they're "not impressed." The quote (from CR itself) says the issues they bring up are mostly minor. I think they're looking at it from a "value for money" standpoint and the pricing of the SL trim level they tested makes it uncompetitive with the Bolt even if there is more included features with the Leaf. That's probably why they're advising to wait for the larger battery to come out.

Re: IEVS: Consumer Reports Not Impressed By 2018 Nissan LEAF

Posted: Tue Aug 07, 2018 5:16 pm
by joeriv
CR liked it enough to “check rate” it.

Re: IEVS: Consumer Reports Not Impressed By 2018 Nissan LEAF

Posted: Tue Aug 07, 2018 8:08 pm
by TomT
I believe that CR is holding the Leaf to a higher standard now than it did before - and rightly so - due to the EV market maturing... Thus, while it may have received higher marks before, with what it is offering now in the current market, they are not as impressed and graded accordingly... Have spent time in the vehicle, I don't disagree with much of their findings...

Re: IEVS: Consumer Reports Not Impressed By 2018 Nissan LEAF

Posted: Wed Aug 08, 2018 4:17 am
by LeftieBiker
TomT wrote:I believe that CR is holding the Leaf to a higher standard now than it did before - and rightly so - due to the EV market maturing... Thus, while it may have received higher marks before, with what it is offering now in the current market, they are not as impressed and graded accordingly... Have spent time in the vehicle, I don't disagree with much of their findings...


My feeling is that they gave it black marks in all the wrong areas (ride, handling, acceleration), while ignoring the ones it should have gotten - like no TMS and the resultant slow QC issue.

Re: IEVS: Consumer Reports Not Impressed By 2018 Nissan LEAF

Posted: Wed Aug 08, 2018 10:22 am
by EVDRIVER
LeftieBiker wrote:
TomT wrote:I believe that CR is holding the Leaf to a higher standard now than it did before - and rightly so - due to the EV market maturing... Thus, while it may have received higher marks before, with what it is offering now in the current market, they are not as impressed and graded accordingly... Have spent time in the vehicle, I don't disagree with much of their findings...


My feeling is that they gave it black marks in all the wrong areas (ride, handling, acceleration), while ignoring the ones it should have gotten - like no TMS and the resultant slow QC issue.


Agreed, I think that the LEAF has never been a performance car and as an EV with long established production roots it should already be top of the game for the pack attributes.

Re: IEVS: Consumer Reports Not Impressed By 2018 Nissan LEAF

Posted: Wed Aug 08, 2018 6:05 pm
by WetEV
LeftieBiker wrote:while ignoring the ones it should have gotten - like no TMS and the resultant slow QC issue.


Not everyone agrees that no TMS and slow QC are major problems.

No TMS means less chance of a battery fire. No water in the battery case.

Slow QC means nothing to anyone that uses the car for commuting or doesn't have QC stations in useful locations.

Re: IEVS: Consumer Reports Not Impressed By 2018 Nissan LEAF

Posted: Wed Aug 08, 2018 6:59 pm
by GRA
RonDawg wrote:Most electrics tend to run out of "oomph" at highway speeds anyway; you notice this when trying to pass a car doing 55 or so MPH when the speed limit is higher. Teslas are the significant exception to that, but you pay for it.

Most of the perceived power of an EV is down low due to a relatively high torque rating combined with a very flat torque curve. I've always told people that while the car does 0-30 very well, by the time it gets to about 60 it's mostly run out of breath.

Comparing my former Leaf to my current eGolf, while the Leaf was definitely easier to get in and out of, it definitely doesn't handle as well as the VW, and feels much more appliance-like. My 2012 with its greater use of aluminum definitely had a "tinny" feel to it when closing the doors.

Yeah, test driving both a 2011 LEAF and a 2017? e-Golf, there's no doubt which one I prefer from a ride/handling perspective, and the LEAF sort of elicited a shrug from me. It would be fine for no thought tooling back and forth to work, but engaging to drive it wasn't. But then I've always preferred more performance-oriented driving dynamics, and I expected the VW to be better in that area - German cars usually are compared to the typical Japanese car, even ignoring hotted-up variants like the GTI/R (there are exceptions, of course - Mazda and nowadays to a lesser extent Honda tend to emphasize performance and 'feel' across the line more than Toyota or Nissan). Surprisingly to me, the e-Golf's initial accel also felt kind of weak - it wasn't bad, but compared to a Bolt or a Spark it was unexceptional. If that meant that VW was using a taller gear ratio so it didn't feel breathless at passing speeds, that would be fine with me.

RonDawg wrote:I think Inside EV's is taking the CR report a bit harshly when they say they're "not impressed." The quote (from CR itself) says the issues they bring up are mostly minor. I think they're looking at it from a "value for money" standpoint and the pricing of the SL trim level they tested makes it uncompetitive with the Bolt even if there is more included features with the Leaf. That's probably why they're advising to wait for the larger battery to come out.

Agreed. Of course, for those of us who care about performance, a real 60kWh Nismo LEAF, not just the badging exercise the upcoming Nismo LEAF seems to be, would be just the ticket.

Re: IEVS: Consumer Reports Not Impressed By 2018 Nissan LEAF

Posted: Thu Aug 09, 2018 6:58 am
by DaveinOlyWA
I would have been shocked to see something different. Without getting full access to the article its only a guess as to how they came about their conclusions but the handling comments? Probably because they complied with the 36 PSI recommendation.... a VERY stupid decision.

The other thing is they car a car review group and still can't help but judge performance since that is what we want hence the 700 HP cars still selling today.

In addition, the mushy handling does not inspire driver confidence, making the LEAF boring to drive


The other thing is that they mark down for ALL flavors beyond Vanilla.


It takes some getting used to, but the gear selector functions well


yeah, all of 3 seconds...

Test performed during Summer in the southern tier but that did not stop speculative comments;

Electric cars can be slow to heat, so we suggest buyers add the optional All-Weather package