• Sign in
  • |
  • Sign up

Long Term

2011 Nissan Leaf: Happy Birthday to Leaf

RELATED READING
RESEARCH BY MAKE
Honda cars, trucks and SUVs Nissan cars, trucks and SUVs Ford cars, trucks and SUVs Toyota cars, trucks and SUVs Lexus cars, trucks and SUVs Hyundai cars, trucks and SUVs Mercedes-Benz cars, trucks and SUVs Acura cars, trucks and SUVs
Acura cars, trucks and SUVs Alfa Romeo cars, trucks and SUVs Aston Martin cars, trucks and SUVs Audi cars, trucks and SUVs Bentley cars, trucks and SUVs BMW cars, trucks and SUVs Buick cars, trucks and SUVs Cadillac cars, trucks and SUVs Chevrolet cars, trucks and SUVs Chrysler cars, trucks and SUVs Dodge cars, trucks and SUVs Ferrari cars, trucks and SUVs FIAT cars, trucks and SUVs Ford cars, trucks and SUVs Freightliner cars, trucks and SUVs GMC cars, trucks and SUVs Honda cars, trucks and SUVs Hyundai cars, trucks and SUVs Infiniti cars, trucks and SUVs Jaguar cars, trucks and SUVs Jeep cars, trucks and SUVs Kia cars, trucks and SUVs Lamborghini cars, trucks and SUVs Land Rover cars, trucks and SUVs Lexus cars, trucks and SUVs Lincoln cars, trucks and SUVs Lotus cars, trucks and SUVs Maserati cars, trucks and SUVs Mazda cars, trucks and SUVs McLaren cars, trucks and SUVs Mercedes-Benz cars, trucks and SUVs MINI cars, trucks and SUVs Mitsubishi cars, trucks and SUVs Nissan cars, trucks and SUVs Porsche cars, trucks and SUVs RAM cars, trucks and SUVs Scion cars, trucks and SUVs smart cars, trucks and SUVs SRT cars, trucks and SUVs Subaru cars, trucks and SUVs Tesla cars, trucks and SUVs Toyota cars, trucks and SUVs Volkswagen cars, trucks and SUVs Volvo cars, trucks and SUVs
RESEARCH BY STYLE
AWD/4WD
Commercial
Convertible
Coupe
Hatchback
Hybrid/Electric
Luxury
Sedan
SUV/Crossover
Truck
Van/Minivan
Wagon
ADDITIONAL MODEL INFORMATION
2011 Nissan Leaf

author photo by Joni Gray

Nissan is celebrating the birth of its Leaf EV and I'm celebrating Hal's birthday too. An online video spot called "Singing Sockets" was released this week featuring the varied voices of 140V plugs singing a rousing "Happy Birthday" was released this week to commemorate the event.

And why not celebrate? In its first short year, the Nissan Leaf has achieved many impressive milestones. Looking back, I'd say it qualifies as a smashing success.

USA Sales Domination

Over a year ago, Nissan set out to see how many people would sign up and invest $99 to reserve a Nissan Leaf EV and before the cars came off the assembly line in Japan, the US market had committed to nearly 20,000. Nissan has since reported that 17,000 Leafs have been sold globally, with the US market dominating any other one country at 9,000 units to date. I'm proud to say more than half (60%) of those US units were sold in California - my home state.

Available in 30 States - 20 more to go…

When the Leaf launched last year, you could only order them from California, Oregon, Arizona and Tennessee (where Nissan is headquartered). On its first birthday, thirty states have access to the Leaf, and Nissan has plans to make it to 50 states by March of 2012. Recent additions include Delaware, Indiana, Louisiana, Nevada, Ohio and Rhode Island.

Leaf Races Backwards at Goodwood

It was really just a stunt for fun, but Nissan took the Leaf to the famous Goodwood race circuit in England this summer to prove that the Leaf is just as efficient going backwards as it is going forwards. Moving at 62 mph, driver, Nissan's driver, Terry Grant, skillfully backed the Leaf for over a mile of the treacherous course. Afterwards, Grant warned the adventurous against doing this at trick at home, "Driving backwards at those speeds is very tricky. You have to be super smooth at all times: any sudden movement of the steering wheel can have disastrous consequences."

It Takes a Leaf "Village"

Leaf's cumulative successes in its first year are not only impressive, but they are an interesting experiment in what one car in the hands of 17,000 owners worldwide can accomplish. Leaf drivers have logged 35 million miles in a pure EV, reduced C02 emissions by 7300 tons, used a daily electrical charge at an average of 3 hours per day and averaged driving range of only around 40 miles per day.

Global Award Winner

Just recently, the Nissan Leaf won Japan's Car of the Year award at the Tokyo Motor Show for its high-performance electric motor, quietness, ride comfort and handling stability. Other trophies in the Nissan Leaf's cabinet include 2012 RJC Car of the Year, presented by the Automotive Researchers' and Journalists' Conference of Japan. It also won the Japan Automotive Hall of Fame Car of the Year, 2011 European Car of the Year and the 2011 World Car of the Year.

RELATED INVENTORY
Saving this vehicle to yourMy Autotrader account
Are you sure you want to delete?
New 2015 Nissan Leaf
New 2015 Nissan Leaf
MSRP $32,000
Saving this vehicle to yourMy Autotrader account
Are you sure you want to delete?
New 2015 Nissan Leaf S
New 2015 Nissan Leaf
MSRP $32,000
Saving this vehicle to yourMy Autotrader account
Are you sure you want to delete?
New 2015 Nissan Leaf SV
New 2015 Nissan Leaf
MSRP $35,345
Saving this vehicle to yourMy Autotrader account
Are you sure you want to delete?
New 2015 Nissan Leaf S
New 2015 Nissan Leaf
MSRP $32,000

I've also had a great year of experiencing the lifestyle and phenomenon of EV ownership with Hal, my Nissan Leaf. However jaded I may be as an automotive writer, the car has never failed to bring a smile to my face and make me proud to be a pioneer of a new era. And as Hal and I zip off into a new year, I'm excited to see what the future may bring as Nissan brings manufacturing here to the states.

Now I'm going to turn on Hal's air conditioning remotely and blow out the candle. Year two can only get better.

Want to learn more? Follow our long-term test of theNissan Leaf.

This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
Close 
2011 Nissan Leaf: Happy Birthday to Leaf