NEW FOR 2015:

– No major changes.

It’s hard to believe that Nissan’s LEAF has been on sale in Canada for four years. During that time it has not only become Canada’s most popular electric vehicle, it’s also earned that title for the world.

There’s much for the electric car consumer to like about the LEAF. Its cabin is nearly as spacious as an Altima, and its interior is well equipped and futuristic. While its 135-km range doesn’t sound like a whole lot, it’s amongst the best in the business, barring the mega-pricey Tesla Model S. Price is another LEAF strong point: it’s one of the most affordable e-cars, too.

All LEAFs are powered by an 80-kW electric motor that receives power from a 24 kWh lithium-ion battery pack. Charge times range from 21 hours on a standard household plug to around five hours from a 240-volt source. A fast-charge port allows the LEAF to be charged up to 80 percent battery life in as little as 30 minutes. Total range is roughly 160 km. A special CARWINGS telematics feature, no-charge for 36 months, allows the operator to remotely monitor the battery, start the charging cycle or turn on the HVAC system through a mobile phone.

Trim levels are S, SV and SL.

Features on the S trim include 6.6 kW onboard charger, regenerative braking, portable tickle-charge cable (110-volt), normal charge port, charge port light and lock, proximity key with push-button start, heated front and rear seats, heated leather-wrapped steering wheel, tilt steering column, cruise control, automatic temperature control, 60/40 split fold-down rear sears with rear seat heater ducts, six-way manual driver’s seat, four-way manual passenger seat, Bluetooth hands-free phone system, 4.3-inch display audio system with AM/FM/CD/satellite radio, USB port, aux-in jack, reverse camera, four speakers, rear spoiler, splash guards.

SV trim adds Nissan Navigation System with seven-inch touch-screen monitor, NavTraffic, text-message assistant, CARWINGS telematics system, six-speaker audio, 16-inch alloy wheels, hybrid heater system, steering wheel-mounted cruise control, auto-dimming rearview mirror, partially recycled cloth upholstery, passenger side map pocket, and quick charge port.

SL trim adds leather seating, LED headlights, automatic on/off headlights, fog lights, 17-inch 5-spoke aluminum-alloy wheels, HomeLink, spoiler with photovoltaic solar-pane, cargo cover, seven-speaker Bose audio system, and 360-degree parking camera.

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