2013 Nissan Leaf

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Key Specs
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Overview
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Key Specs

of the 2013 Nissan Leaf. Base trim shown.

Our Take

From the Cars.com Vehicle Test Team

The Good

  • Drives like a real car
  • Sprightly acceleration
  • Zero tailpipe emissions
  • Low fuel cost
  • Many tax incentives
  • Remote charge control

The Bad

  • High floor in backseat
  • Range varies with temperature, terrain
  • Charger installation can be pricey
  • Limited public charging infrastructure

Notable Features of the 2013 Nissan Leaf

  • More affordable base S version
  • New 6.6-kw onboard charger option for faster charging
  • Pure battery-electric car
  • Five-seat compact hatchback
  • 100-mile range (estimated)

2013 Nissan Leaf Overview

By Cars.com Editors
Vehicle Overview

Now built in the U.S., the Nissan Leaf is a purely battery-electric mass-market car. With no onboard range-extending generator like the Chevrolet Volt's, the Leaf has a range of roughly 100 miles, period. A five-seat compact four-door hatchback, the Leaf is eligible for federal and state incentives. Competitors include the Ford Focus Electric and Mitsubishi i.

New for 2013
Nissan claims improvements to the 2013 Leaf's aerodynamics, energy management system and regenerative braking help the car travel farther on a charge. A newly optional 6.6-kw onboard charger lowers the time it takes to charge the battery using a Level 2 setup from seven hours to four, according to Nissan.

A less-expensive entry-level S trim level is new for 2013, and sticker prices for the SV and SL trims have been lowered, too.

Other changes include an optional hybrid heater system for better, more efficient heating in cold weather; an optional B driving mode that enables more aggressive regenerative braking; and a charge port door release button on the key fob.

Additional upgrades include a standard leather-wrapped steering wheel, a new black interior color scheme, more cargo room and new available features like Bose premium audio, 17-inch alloy wheels, a surround-view camera system and leather upholstery.
ExteriorAmong high-efficiency four-doors with aerodynamic shapes, the Leaf manages to look distinctive, mainly due to its curvy rear end and raised headlights, which are designed ...

Vehicle Overview

Now built in the U.S., the Nissan Leaf is a purely battery-electric mass-market car. With no onboard range-extending generator like the Chevrolet Volt's, the Leaf has a range of roughly 100 miles, period. A five-seat compact four-door hatchback, the Leaf is eligible for federal and state incentives. Competitors include the Ford Focus Electric and Mitsubishi i.

New for 2013
Nissan claims improvements to the 2013 Leaf's aerodynamics, energy management system and regenerative braking help the car travel farther on a charge. A newly optional 6.6-kw onboard charger lowers the time it takes to charge the battery using a Level 2 setup from seven hours to four, according to Nissan.

A less-expensive entry-level S trim level is new for 2013, and sticker prices for the SV and SL trims have been lowered, too.

Other changes include an optional hybrid heater system for better, more efficient heating in cold weather; an optional B driving mode that enables more aggressive regenerative braking; and a charge port door release button on the key fob.

Additional upgrades include a standard leather-wrapped steering wheel, a new black interior color scheme, more cargo room and new available features like Bose premium audio, 17-inch alloy wheels, a surround-view camera system and leather upholstery.
ExteriorAmong high-efficiency four-doors with aerodynamic shapes, the Leaf manages to look distinctive, mainly due to its curvy rear end and raised headlights, which are designed to deflect oncoming air around the side mirrors to reduce drag and noise. Exterior features include:

  • Standard 16-inch steel wheels with covers; 16- and 17-inch alloy wheels available
  • Standard rear spoiler
  • Locking and lighted charge port on the nose of the car
  • Standard LED taillights; optional LED headlamps
  • Optional fog lamps
  • Small solar panel atop the SL's liftgate spoiler trickle-charges the regular 12-volt battery

InteriorThe five-seat Leaf has a 60/40-split folding backseat that extends the cargo area forward. Interior features include:

  • Standard cloth upholstery; leather-trimmed seats optional
  • Standard front and rear heated seats
  • Standard heated steering wheel
  • Standard CD stereo with MP3 jack and iPod connectivity
  • Standard Bluetooth connectivity
  • Dash screen can show a graphical range indicator on the available navigation system's map and provide multiple energy-readout screens to help gauge energy use and remaining range
  • Optional Pandora integration for iPhone
  • Optional navigation system has a new Eco route feature that suggests energy-saving routes

Under the HoodThe Leaf uses a 340-volt battery pack to power an electric drive motor, which drives the front wheels with 107 horsepower and 187 pounds-feet of torque. Mechanical features include:

  • Depleted battery can recharge in seven hours at 240 volts or in 21 hours at 120 volts
  • Optional 6.6-kw onboard charger cuts charging time to four hours at 240 volts
  • A public quick-charge station (where available) can charge a depleted battery to 80 percent in about 30 minutes, but it requires the optional quick-charge port

SafetyThe Leaf's high-voltage battery pack is designed to disconnect in the event of an airbag deployment or water intrusion. At the behest of rescue workers, Nissan incorporated an access panel into the floor that has a kill switch for first responders. Safety features include:

  • Side-impact airbags for the front seats
  • Side curtain airbags
  • Antilock brakes
  • Electronic stability system
  • Traction control
  • Optional backup camera

 


Latest 2013 Leaf Stories

Consumer Reviews

Exterior Styling
(3.9)
Performance
(4.4)
Interior Design
(4.4)
Comfort
(4.4)
Reliability
(4.3)
Value For The Money
(4.4)

What Drivers Are Saying

(4.0)

Great way to go green and save a lot of green also

by goinggreen from VT on August 11, 2018

This is an amazing city car for anyone looking to go green. We have saved lots of money by not having to purchase gas. Heated front and rear seats and steering wheel are a huge plus too! Read full review

(4.0)

Gas free is the way to be

by Yardman24 from West Palm, Florida on June 13, 2018

I've owned 2 Nissan Leafs. I live by a plethora of charge stations so it was the obvious decision for me plus I can charge at work. Haven't bought gasoline in 4 years. Capable of charging to 80% in 30 ... Read full review

Safety & Recalls

Recalls

The 2013 Nissan Leaf currently has 4 recalls

IIHS Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

Based on 2013 Nissan Leaf S

IIHS rates vehicles good, acceptable, marginal, or poor.

Head Restraints and Seats

Dynamic Rating
good
Overall Rear
good
Seat Head/Restraint Geometry
good

Moderate overlap front

Chest
good
Head/Neck
good
Left Leg/Foot
good
Overall Front
good
Restraints
good
Right Leg/Foot
good
Structure/safety cage
good

Other

Roof Strength
good

Side

Driver Head Protection
good
Driver Head and Neck
good
Driver Pelvis/Leg
good
Driver Torso
good
Overall Side
good
Rear Passenger Head Protection
good
Rear Passenger Head and Neck
good
Rear Passenger Pelvis/Leg
good
Rear Passenger Torso
good
Structure/safety cage
good
Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) is a nonprofit research and communications organization funded by auto insurers.

Manufacturer Warranty

  • Bumper-to-Bumper

    36 months / 36,000 miles

  • Powertrain

    60 months / 60,000 miles

  • Roadside Assistance

    36 months / unlimited distance

CPO Program & Warranty

Certified Pre-Owned by Nissan

Program Benefits

24 Hour Emergency Roadside Assistance, Towing Assistance, Trip Interruption Benefits, 3-month free subscription to SiriusXM Satellite Radio on properly equipped vehicles, Complimentary CARFAX® Vehicle History Report™ and 3-Year CARFAX® Buy Back Guarantee

  • Limited Warranty

    7 years / 100,000 miles

    7-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty from original in-service date; $50 deductible
  • Eligibility

    Under 6 years / 80,000 miles

    Vehicles receive a 167 point inspection and reconditioning.

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Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The Leaf received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

What is included in Roadside Assistance?

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker