Raleigh, North Carolina – Nissan will expand availability of its all-electric Leaf to U.S. consumers with the 2012 model, which includes upgrades based on feedback from current owners.

The 2012 model will also be available for order in the Southeastern U.S. and Illinois, and the ordering process will begin this month with consumers with existing reservations in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Maryland, Mississippi, North and South Carolina, Virginia and Washington, D.C. The Leaf has already been on sale in Arizona, California, Hawaii, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas and Washington State.

The new standard features include DC fast-charge capability on the SL trim line and cold-weather features such as a battery warmer, heated steering wheel, and front and rear heated seats. Nissan said that the vast majority of customers for the 2011 model opted for the DC fast-charge port, which allows the vehicle to be charged at 480 volts, reducing charging time to under 30 minutes from fully depleted to 80 per cent charge.

In the U.S., the Leaf will start at US$35,200 for the SV and $37,250 for the SL, and with a monthly lease rate that begins at $369. More than 4,000 Leafs have already been delivered to U.S. customers.

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