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To Combat Slowing Sales, Nissan Slashes Leaf Pricing 16
Jan
Posted by Kurt Ernst in 2013 Nissan Leaf, Automotive, Editorial, Electric, Kurt, nissan on 01 16th, 2013
2013 Nissan LEAF

The 2013 Nissan Leaf – image: Nissan

While automotive news was flowing in a steady stream from the Detroit Auto Show, Nissan managed to slip a quiet update under the radar. It’s no secret that sales of its Leaf electric car haven’t exactly met expectations, so Nissan is doing the prudent thing: it’s slashing the Leaf’s starting price.

Thanks to a newly-created Leaf S trim, as well as a shift to lower-cost U.S. assembly, Nissan is selling its electric car at a starting price of just $28,800. That’s $6,000, or 18-percent, less than the Leaf’s point of entry last year. Factor in federal and state tax credits, and Nissan points out that the Leaf could ultimately cost as little as $18,800, putting it in the same price bracket as comparable gasoline-powered vehicles.

Nissan has reduced Leaf pricing on other trims as well, so customers shopping for higher content levels will save money, too. A 2012 Leaf SV was priced from $35,200 (sans destination), while the 2013 Leaf SV begins at just $31,820 (also excluding destination. The range-topping Leaf SL cost $37,250 last year, but this year’s price is dropped to $34,840.

Will that be enough to boost sales? We suppose that answer is tied to the cost of gasoline and the amount of consumer disposable income for a second (or third) vehicle. We don’t know of anyone who’d buy a Leaf as a primary vehicle, since its limited range and long charging times are an issue for most consumers. Still, as a daily commuter (for those with short to moderate commutes), the Leaf makes some sense. Is it now priced attractively enough for consumers to agree? Nissan hopes the answer is yes.







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