Yes, gas prices are up but that has not bothered me this week as I have been reviewing the 2022 Nissan Leaf SL Plus sedan. This all-electric vehicle came out in 2011 and has sold more than a half million units worldwide.
My Leaf SL Plus review vehicle features a larger-capacity 62-kWh lithium-ion battery, increasing the range to up to 226 miles. Leaf Plus also features a more powerful 160 kW motor that produces 214-horsepower and 250 lb.-ft. of torque. This model is offered in three trim levels – S Plus, SV Plus and the top-of-the-line SL Plus.
The Leaf is a sharp-looking vehicle with distinct lines and nice looking 17” alloy wheels. In the rear, a black spoiler and black accents roll into the bottom of the hatchback, just below the rear glass. It proudly boasts “zero emissions” on the rear.
Inside, I was surprised at how nice the interior was. The leather front seats were slightly bolstered and were incredibly comfortable. Drivers get 8-way power adjustments.
Push the start button, and you get no sound to speak of, but you get a very colorful gauge cluster that explodes to life. On the right you’ll find a large speedometer, and to the left is a configurable driver info center that is controlled from the steering wheel.
Center dash is a 7” color touchscreen that operates all the audio, the Bluetooth for your phone, vehicle settings, navigation system (which will take you to the nearest charger) and a host of real-time data. You can activate wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. It also comes with SiriusXM. All of this works seamlessly and is quick and intuitive. An energy usage screen will give you your range.
Moving down, the center console has a shift knob that is quite simple. A twist to the right is reverse, a twist to the left is drive. You can activate the Eco drive system and turn on the e-Pedal, one of my favorite features.
e-Pedal essentially allows you to drive with just your right foot. When you let off the gas pedal the car immediately starts to slow down at a pretty rapid pace, all the time sending electric charges to the battery. Once the car is stopped, it will hold your place until you hit the gas pedal again. Once you get used to this, it is easy to use and makes driving simpler.
Back seat room is really good. Leg room is good and head room would be enough for two passengers up to 6-foot tall.
My tester is loaded with standard equipment including power windows, tilt wheel, blind spot warning, forward collision warning, rear camera with cross traffic alert, and lane departure warning. You also get heated front seats and a heated steering wheel.
2022 Leaf comes with Nissan’s terrific ProPilot Assist, which gives it limited self-driving capability. ProPilot Assist is a hands-on driver assist system that combines Nissan's Intelligent Cruise Control and Steering Assist technologies and includes a stop and hold function that can bring the vehicle to a full stop, hold in place and can bring you back up to speed when traffic starts moving again.
Ride and Drive
The Leaf drives very well, and is quiet inside. Like most electrics, the acceleration is strong from a dead stop, and cruising at 70-mph feels effortless.
There are two charging ports under an electronic opening small lid in the front of the Leaf. One is for a regular 110 outlet and another for a 240 outlet. I would recommend owners install a level 3 charger, which will give you an 80% charge in just one hour. Most electric car makers recommend 80% charges and say not going to 100% will extend the battery life.
What You'll Pay and MPGe
Pricewise, the MSRP of my tester is $39,255, and this vehicle does qualify for the $7500 Federal Tax Credit and any applicable state rebates. Nissan actually lowered the price of the 2022 Leaf, in spite of adding longer range and more features. Base price of the standard Leaf for 2022 is $27,400 before tax credits and applicable state rebates.
Fuel economy is rated at 104 MPGe, which is what the EPA rates electric cars at. The rating is the equivalent of the same vehicle if it were gas powered.
I had a really enjoyable week with the 2022 Leaf, only plugging it into a 110 outlet, I never experienced any range anxiety driving it normally in a mix of city and highway speeds.
- What I Liked Most: The ride, drive, and never going to a gas station.
- What I would change: Really nothing, this is a great EV.
- MSRP: Base price $37,400; Total with transportation: $39,255.
- Fuel Economy: 114 MPGe city/94 MPGe Highway/104 MPGe overall.
- Odometer reading when tested: 2,100 miles.
- Weight: 3,934 pounds.
- Spare Tire: Repair kit.
- Length-Width-Height: 176.4" long/70.5” wide/62” high.
- Fuel Tank Capacity: N/A
- Official Color: Sunset Drift.
- Towing Capacity: N/A
- 2022 Nissan LEAF PLUS in a few words: An affordable electric, very nicely appointed. The price on today’s market is exceptional.
- Warranty: 3-year/36000-mile bumper-to-bumper with roadside assistance, 5-year/60,000 mile power train warranty.
- Final Assembly Location: Smyrna, TN.
- Manufacturer's website: Nissan