In-depth reviews

Nissan Leaf review: range, battery & charging

The Leaf does a good job of getting close to its claimed range figures, although more modern rivals go further and charge faster

Overall rating

3.5 out of 5

Range, battery & charging rating

3.5 out of 5

£28,995 - £36,445
Fuel Type:



Wallbox charge time

Rapid charge time


168 miles

7hrs 30mins (6.6kW)

60mins (20-80%, 50kW)

Leaf e+

239 miles

11hrs (6.6kW)

90mins (20-80%, 50kW)

The Nissan Leaf has many tools in its armoury to maximise the number of miles it can travel on a charge. Even if you only stick it in Eco mode and forget about the range-maximising e-Pedal, the e+ version will do well over 200 miles. Some reports suggest the range-topper will charge at up to 100kW, though Nissan still quotes figures for a 50kW maximum – taking anything between 60 and 90 minutes for a 20-80% charge; rivals are faster in this regard.

The Nissan does get an app for activating charging remotely, checking on the charging status, setting the climate control, and more. However, it’s rated extremely poorly on the various app stores, and our experience of it when living with the car is that it’s quite hard to use, needs updating or reinstalling too often, and sometimes fails to connect with the car at all.

Nissan Leaf range

The entry-level 40kWh Nissan Leaf’s claimed range is 168 miles from a charge, and in our own tests, we’ve consistently achieved more than 160, which is impressively close to the official number. Naturally, your Leaf’s range will vary based not only on how you drive it, but also on the accessories you use, such as air-conditioning.

As with other electric cars, cold weather can affect your range, so you can expect the total driving range to dip – in this case to maybe as low as 130 miles – in cold weather or if you drive mostly on the motorway (where electric cars are less efficient than they are around town and on slower roads).

The bigger-battery Leaf e+ version boosts the car's official range to 239 miles. In tests, we found it averaged around 3.5 miles per kWh efficiency and just over 210 miles to a charge in warmer weather and mixed driving conditions.

Charge time

The standard Nissan Leaf has a battery capacity of 40kWh and can be charged from a normal three-pin socket in your house – but this takes around 18 hours to charge from a low battery warning to 100%. Most buyers will instead charge faster using a home or workplace wallbox, which you can plug into with the standard five-metre Type 2 cable the car comes with. A 7.4kW charger like this will take just over seven hours to replenish the standard Leaf to 100%, and 10.5 hours to do the same for the larger-battery e+ model.

This same cable also gives you access to the vast majority of public chargers found in town-centre car parks, gyms and shopping centres, but seven-and-a-half hours is the fastest charge you'll ever get in the Leaf from an AC charging point

Fortunately, both versions of the Leaf have DC rapid charging capability, too. Some sources suggest the e+ version gets faster 100kW charging, though Nissan quotes a more modest 50kW maximum for both cars – allowing for a 20-80% charge in 60 or 90 minutes for the 40kWh and 62kWh models respectively. Whichever way you look at it, rivals charge faster; both the cheaper MG4 and pricier Volkswagen ID.3 max out at around 135kW and can perform similar charges in less than 40 minutes.

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