Nissan Leaf sales declined last month

Nissan Leaf sales in Japan by April, 2018

At least in three major markets, Nissan Leaf sales declined last month.

  • In Japan, sales dropped from 2.997 (March) to 874 units (April).
  • In Norway, registrations dropped from 2.340 (March) to 1.210 units (April).
  • In USA, sales dropped from 1.500 (March) to 1.171 units (April).


However, considering that March is the end of a quarter and April is not, this situation could be temporary. We’ll see in May if sales recover in these important markets for electric cars.

Nonetheless, the good news is that in secondary markets, first deliveries are finally underway.



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Pedro Lima

My interest in electric transportation is mostly political. Iโ€™m tired of coups and wars for oil. My expectation is that the adoption of electric transportation will be a factor for peace and democracy all over the world.

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Richard Petek
3 years ago

We all know the reason for the sales decline. Google #rapidgate .

3 years ago

I think we’re all familiar with rapidgate. It’s still early. Let’s not proclaim the king is dead yet.

Kel Dommage
3 years ago

Donโ€™t think itโ€™s going to be a major factor, but it does redefine the car for a lot of people. That was willing to take a chance on a car electric car might be holding back now because of the range situation. I know I haveโ€ฆ

Richard Petek
3 years ago
Reply to  Kel Dommage

Kel Dommage, as you say, it redefines THIS car to a short- / mid- range commuter car with a limited usability as a first / family car. If an ICE car should be rented for long trips like holidays every time and every year, this significantly adds for rent, fuel and inconvenience for the whole process.
In my opinion this major design fault will be the cause for significant amount of potential buyers to switch over to Hyundai Ioniq and/or Kona.
Whoever is satisfied with the basic + one fast charge range of about 300-350 km per day without issues, also in summer, this EV is a good choice for him.
But sorry, the “king” IS dead when ever long-term Leaf users call it “a lemon”, comparing it to the old 30 kWh version.

3 years ago
Reply to  Richard Petek

They will not switch to Ioniq / Kona, cos Hyundai will not produce them enough…

Juan Manuel
3 years ago

Having had a Leaf 1, two Teslas and currently a Peugeot Ion (and being an automotive engineer) I think that rapidgate is a bit exaggerated. We know that it affects quick chargers after the third (inclusive) consecutive charge. How often do you do that? and how does this limit you? maybe after two 30 min Pause a bigger one is a good idea after all? Take into account what you do not have can not break and weights nothing. Simplicity is quite underrated nowadays in my opinion.

Martin Messer Thomsen
3 years ago
Reply to  Juan Manuel

I will be already it the first fastcharge if you drive 110 km/h!

3 years ago
Reply to  Juan Manuel

I couldn’t agree more. I’m over twenty years of driving I can recall only two times I’ve exceeded 500 I’m in a day. Once I drove 700 km, but then had a two-hour stop after 350 km, and a half-hour stop after about 550.

Maybe I wouldn’t have been able to charge during my two-hour stay; I was at a meeting. It’s possible that I would have had to adapt to the car if I’d been in the new LEAF (instead of the fossil I’d borrowed for the day). But to leap from identifying some rare circumstance where some adaptation would be required and straight to the -gate suffix is sensationalism of the worst kind.

3 years ago
Reply to  Terawatt

That’s fine about 500km being infrequent but what happens when the external temp is in the 30’s and evena first charge is slow? I can imagine we’ll be seeing reports if this from southern med countries soon.

3 years ago

In the south of Spain, now that the heat starts, there is an excessive heating of the battery and its enormous thermal inertia. If enough km are made every day, it is normal to be almost permanently above 40 ยฐ C … temperatures much higher than those of the Leaf 24-30.

In these conditions, more premature degradation of the battery is a concern than the “rapidgate”.

3 years ago
Reply to  Zankk

Agreed. But it seems to me you’d need a different chemistry, not merely active TMS, to cope in such conditions. Permanently above 40 isn’t good for any li-ion battery. How much energy does a Tesla spend trying to keep it’s pack cool, and how cool does it in fact keep the pack? Especially if driven like a Tesla… that is, using high power levels, accompanied by lower efficiency and more heat generated in the pack.

3 years ago

In the UK, the ever lengthening lead times for the car will also be putting people off. As will the lack of affordable lease offers due to Nissan removing any support for these due to the high demand they are already trying to satisfy.

3 years ago

Here in Denmark the situation is a bit different. There are several new Nissan Leaf for sale and they don’t seem to be selling very fast. And at the same time Hyundai Ioniq Electric have shown up. Some lightly used (demo cars) and others brand new, they don’t seem to be selling very fast either. The cars are pretty expensive new Nissan Leaf Tekna and Hyundai Ioniq Electric Premium are priced at 40.000 Euros.

3 years ago

I think rapidgate contained some surprising lessons, and it’s a good reminder that charging speed (a) isn’t simply a function of capacity, and (b) is the limiting factor on seriously long drives.

But apart from academic interest I don’t think it matters for many buyers of the LEAF. The number of days per year per owner in which the owner drives, or wants to drive, more than 500 km is unknown, but I’d bet is far less than one. Personally I think I’ve driven more than 500 km in a day twice, which is less than once per decade since I got my license. I would have to be incredibly stupid to put any emphasis at all on how a car handles that situation when making a buying decision – it’s less relevant than whether I like the styling of the inside of the glovebox… Up to 500 km in a day, which is easily done with two charging sessions, there’s no rate-limiting issue. For me, having the extra capacity and needing much less, often zero, fast charging on more typical trips would matter far more. That said, the rate Nissan has achieved is pretty disappointing. And the cold weather range, too. And the efficiency. Ioniq has it bested in all areas, and by a huge margin in the efficiency department. But the LEAF is still a good car, and I reckon probably the best buy in the market. It hardly ever goes wrong, it’s comfortable and relaxing, well equipped, and importantly quite affordable. Now it even has a bit of power.

3 years ago

Here in Portugal only in April started deliveries of first editions…and many only in May and June..

Mine will come late May, ordered early Dec. 2017.

Many have been said of rapidgate in 40kwh and degradation of batteries in Leaf’s… let’s wait for time to see how this product “ages”…
I’ve bought this car as primarly family car, and will try to put our megane break diesel as secondary car (now with 347 KKm)…am planning for the first trip already through Portugal on long weekend (+/-340kms x2), including 2 fast charges in each direction (motorway and range anxiety).