The current Leaf on sale, in its second generation, represents a major step forward for the Japanese automaker – but some of the fans are eagerly awaiting for more.
That would be the often reported longer range version of the model, one that would squarely pit it against the champions of the affordable electric segment – the Chevrolet Bolt and the Tesla Model 3. The current 40 kWh Leaf with its 150 miles (241 km) rating for a single charge is clearly no match for the Chevrolet Bolt (238 miles) or Tesla Model 3 (220 miles, base variant). Its performance did put it marginally ahead of the Volkswagen e-Golf or the Hyundai Ioniq Electric, its major trump card – at least in the US – being the entry-level price of less than $30,000.
The company did fuel expectations by saying when the Leaf was released a longer-range model will follow – but there were no details to go with. Now, according to a new report, we have some of the juicy facts. Apparently the new version is a thorough upgrade over the base Leaf – it will boast a 60 kWh battery pack, complete with thermal management and the cell provider has been changed to LG Chem. According to the leak, the max range will jump to more than 225 miles (362 km), while the engine will also receive an upgrade, jumping from 110 kW to 160 kW, cutting the not to 60 mph time from 8.5 seconds to around 6.5 seconds. Last, but probably most important, there’s enhanced charging – the internal charger surges from 6.6 kW to 11-22 kW, with DC fast charging rating at up to 100 kW.