October Leaf Sales Down With Improved 2016 Model Due Soon

The best-selling plug-in car in the U.S. and world, the Nissan Leaf, has seen its U.S. sales down over 37 percent this year, and October’s 1,238 deliveries was par for the course.

As an improved 2016 Leaf is pending, October’s sales number was nearly the same as September’s 1,247 sales, and brings the year-to-date tally to 14,868 U.S. sales.

Nissan said 87,198 units have been sold in this country since its December 2010 launch, and the 2016 model with up to 107-miles range in two upper trim levels should be able to be ordered at dealers this month, said Nissan’s Dan Passe senior manager of product communications.

Accounting for shipping time from Nissan’s assembly plant in Smyrna, Tenn, these 2016s, he added, may not arrive in dealerships until December.

An announcement on the 2016 Leaf’s pricing and related info is also “imminent,” said Passe.

With this car, Nissan will continue to proffer the first-generation Leaf that has been updated twice – from 73 to 84 miles range in 2013 and again 84 to up to 107 for 2016.

The first update retained a 24-kwh battery size, but improved efficiencies in power management accounted for the uptick. The 2016 gets a 30-kwh pack to achieve its extra range capacity.

For a car representing the front of the spear for the advanced-tech Japanese automaker bullish on EVs, it is being nursed along with a comparatively long product life.

Meanwhile, the other major-manufacturer plug-in car launched the same month, the extended-range Chevrolet Volt with 53 miles range plus gas backup is rolling out in second-generation form. This is happening now in California and 10 states following its rules, and next spring it arrives as a 2017 for the rest of the country, said Chevrolet.

Will the next Leaf look a lot like this and go or more 200 miles on a charge?

Will the next Leaf look a lot like this and go or more 200 miles on a charge?

Speculation has been Nissan’s second-generation Leaf might arrive for 2017 to counter the Volt and the 200-mile 2017 Chevy Bolt also announced, but Nissan has not made any official announcement.

According to one report from Japan following a tech preview of Nissan’s 60-kwh IDS concept, the gen-two Leaf’s model year could be 2018 despite that flying in the face of what people want to see, and say needs to happen for Nissan to be fully competitive.

SEE ALSO: Nissan IDS Concept Foreshadows 60-kWh Next-Generation Leaf

The IDS concept, said the report, may also represent design cues that the next-generation Leaf might bring forth. If so, it will match previous reports that a departure from the present look is in the works.

But we do not expect official confirmation on gen-two Leaf from Nissan yet as it is just now drumming up interest for the revised 2016 product on hand.

With 107 miles range in two upper trim levels, assuming competitive pricing, the 2016 Leaf will meet daily driving needs for more people than the 84-mile range of the present and base-level 2016 Leaf.