Nissan Leaf running costs

The Nissan Leaf is affordable to buy and also one of the cheapest hatchbacks to run

Insurance group Warranty Service intervals 2018/19 company car cost (20%/40%)
21E 60 months / 60,000 miles 18,000 miles £770.51 / £1,541.02

The Nissan Leaf range starts at £27,290 for the Visia trim, but we think the Acenta trim – the next one up – makes the Leaf a far better car. It’ll cost you £29,690, but don’t forget all models in the Leaf range are eligible for the government’s plug-in car grant, which lops £3,500 off the price straight away for private buyers.

Company-car drivers will still be hit with the full P11D value, but a Benefit-in-Kind rate of 13% and low running costs will compensate. A Leaf Acenta will cost a 20% taxpayer £771 this tax year, rising to £948 in 2019/20, but just £119 in 2020/21. It’ll cost 40% taxpayers £1,541, £1,897 and £237 respectively.

Nissan Leaf insurance group

All versions of the Nissan Leaf fall into insurance group 21, which is only a little higher than the rating for a high-specification Ford Focus diesel. As such, insurance premiums should be reasonable for most drivers. Nissan offers its own insurance policies, which come with a range of benefits, but you can use your own insurance provider if you prefer. As with any car insurance policy, you should shop around for the best deal.

Warranty

The Nissan Leaf’s warranty is pretty comprehensive. All electric drive components are covered by a five-year/60,000-mile warranty, but ‘standard’ components are only covered for three years/60,000 miles. The warranty can be extended for an extra fee.

There’s also a lithium-ion battery warranty, which protects against capacity loss for eight years or 100,000 miles. The policy will kick in if the maximum capacity drops below nine bars, out of the 12 that are displayed on the Leaf’s screen.

Servicing

The Nissan Leaf needs to be serviced every 18,000 miles. Those intervals are spread further than for many petrol or diesel cars, due to the smaller number of moving parts in an electric car. Although you can have your Leaf serviced wherever you like in accordance with Nissan’s schedule to keep the warranty valid, the reality is that relatively few independent garages are geared up to work on electric cars.

To mitigate this, Nissan offers a service contract. It also provides a number of useful incentives to encourage you to keep servicing your car at one of its dealers, including free breakdown cover.

Road tax

Electric cars are currently exempt from road tax, as they emit no carbon dioxide at the tailpipe.

Depreciation

As with many electric cars, depreciation – the value a car loses over time – is a case of who to believe. One well respected price guide puts the value retained over the first three years and 36,000 miles at around 34%. Dealers seem to disagree, and place a far higher value on them.