The 2023 Nissan Leaf electric car blooms into another model year with a fresh face but only two trim levels down from five last year. The price increases $520 to $28,895 for the base Leaf S, Nissan announced Tuesday.
The longer-range 2023 Leaf SV Plus costs $36,895, which is also an increase of $520 over the 2022 Nissan Leaf. The fresh look on the Leaf arrives despite a whittled down lineup of essentially two different battery packs, with the Leaf S using a 40-kwh battery pack with a range of up to 149 miles, and the Leaf SV Plus employing a 60-kwh pack with a range of 212 miles. Both models are front-wheel drive.
Since it launched in late 2010, the Nissan Leaf electric hatchback has been one of the more affordable electric cars. In both range and price, however, the stalwart Leaf can't match the latest announcement from Chevrolet regarding the Bolt EV and Bolt EUV electric hatchbacks. Earlier this month, bucking inflationary price hikes across the industry, Chevy slashed prices by up to $6,300, making the 2023 Chevy Bolt EV the most affordable electric car at $26,595, including destination.
The 2023 Bolt EV and Bolt EUV are powered by a 200-hp electric motor at the front wheels, with a 65-kwh battery pack affording a range of 259 miles for the Bolt EV or 247 miles for the Bolt EUV.
Unlike the 2023 Bolt, the Nissan Leaf still qualifies for the $7,500 federal EV tax credit, depending on your tax liability. The base Leaf S could be a better deal, but it's hard to ignore the additional range on the SV Plus.
With the pared down lineup and the delayed 2023 Nissan Ariya electric crossover due in dealerships soon, Nissan may be turning over a new Leaf by phasing out the EV once the tax credit phases out, which will likely begin this year.
For one more year at least, the changes are mostly cosmetic, with a blacked-out front fascia instead of the chrome wings of its predecessor. Nissan illuminates the badge up front, and the SV Plus gets standard 17-inch wheels with a funky pinwheel design featuring five sets of six spokes. Less obvious changes enhance aerodynamics.
The SV Plus model comes with more sophisticated features, including Nissan's limited hands-free driver-assist system that uses adaptive cruise control and active lane control that can come to a complete stop in traffic then restart and reach the set speed without driver intervention.
The 2023 Nissan Leaf is on sale.