The Nissan Iberia, responsible for Nissan sales in Portugal and Spain, is again showing us where the Nissan’s strategy in Europe is going.
Portugal and Spain were the first countries where Nissan introduced the 30 kWh battery to the entry level trim (Leaf Visia). Now the Flex option (battery lease) was removed from the Leaf’s configurator.
This is good news in my book as it tells that now the company has confidence in its battery and is more receptive to sell electric cars.
The battery leasing undermines electric cars in at least two ways. First it scares off the consumers by stating that the battery is more prone to failure than any other component, so it’s better to lease it than buy it. Second, the monthly payments allied to limited mileage remove one of electric car’s biggest advantages, low running costs.
Battery leasing only makes sense for low quality automakers that don’t trust their products. We would never see it in Tesla Motors or BMW.
Truth to be told, the battery leasing never got popular with Leaf’s buyers. In the USA, Nissan didn’t even introduced it. Only in Europe, Nissan gives the option to lease the battery. Probably to make Renault some company.
Maybe in the upcoming Paris Motor Show, the sister company Renault will finally announce that the battery leasing for its electric vehicles will soon be optional in every market, not mandatory as it currently is in most countries.