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Volkswagen ID.3 vs Nissan Leaf: verdict and specifications

The Volkswagen ID.3 feels like the next step for electric family car; the Nissan Leaf has now been left behind

The family car will change dramatically over the coming years, and the Volkswagen ID.3 – and to some extent, the Nissan Leaf – show where it’s going. These cars are super-quiet, comfortable and cheap to run. Crucially, they don’t produce tailpipe emissions, which will become more and more important as time goes by.

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The Volkswagen is a look at the future, with its high-tech interior, comfortable and composed driving experience and super-fast charging, while the Nissan now seems like a ‘first look’ at electric-car technology that's falling behind newer products.

1st: Volkswagen ID.3

The ID.3 is quick, quiet, comfortable, full of technology and very cheap to run – all of which means it’s a superb family car. It has plenty of usable range, and with even longer-range variants coming soon, that point will get even better. It’s also really spacious for passengers and has lots of clever technology on board. It’s just a shame the interior isn’t higher quality, and we'd like a few more physical buttons on the dashboard.

2nd: Nissan Leaf

The Nissan Leaf showed us what the future of the car would be when it first arrived, and this second-generation model improved the formula. It’s now feeling dated, though: the technology inside is lacking and it’s not as comfortable nor as good to drive as the Volkswagen. It’s cursed with a poor driving position and has less passenger space than its newest rival, too.

Specifications

CarVolkswagen ID.3 1ST PlusNissan Leaf e+ Tekna
List price£35,880£36,395
Monthly finance (PCP)£539£450
MotorSingle electric motorSingle electric motor
TransmissionSingle-speed, rear-wheel driveSingle-speed, front-wheel drive
Battery capacity (total / usable)62 / 58kWh62 / 56kWh
Power / torque201bhp / 310Nm214bhp / 340Nm
0-62mph7.3 seconds6.9 seconds
Top speed99mph98mph
100% charge cost at 14p/kWh£8.35£8.06
Charge time (socket/wallbox/50kW/100kW)9h 15m / 6h15m / 57m / 30m10h / 10h / 62m / 35m
Official electric range260 miles239 miles
On-test MPG / electric range203 miles207 miles
Road tax / BiK rate £0 / 0%£0 / 0%
Length / width / height / wheelbase4,261 / 1,568 / 1,809 / 2,770mm4,490 / 1,545 / 1,788 / 2,700mm
Boot capacity (seats up/down)385 / 1,267 Iitres420 / 1,176 litres
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Richard is editor of DrivingElectric, as well as sister site Carbuyer.co.uk, and a regular contributor to Auto Express. An electric and hybrid car advocate, he spent more than five years working on the news and reviews desk at Auto Express and has driven almost every new car currently on sale.

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