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A black 2024 Nissan LEAF is shown driving on a road to visit a Nissan LEAF for sale.

The Nissan LEAF Is the Best EV for Canadian Drivers on a Budget

As the electric revolution takes hold, you don’t want to be left behind. Car manufacturers are happily spreading the word about their current and upcoming EVs, many of which are able to provide high performance. Electric charging stations are appearing all across the Canadian landscape, reminding you that there’s never been a better time to get on board the electric vehicle bandwagon. Yet, if you have some economic concerns about purchasing a new ride, we understand. The automobile market has been hit especially hard by the supply chain crisis, and many drivers are left wondering if there’s any way you can purchase an affordable EV.

Don’t worry. We’re going to take the time today to discuss one affordable electric option so that you can embrace efficiency and environmentalism without having to break the bank. Don’t believe us? Just look for a Nissan LEAF for sale. You’ll notice that this eco-friendly vehicle costs a lot less than other EVs on the market. The LEAF is defined by its versatility and value, constantly awing customers with the wide spectrum of drivers it can serve.

The LEAF isn’t the only affordable EV option available today, but a recent upheaval in the EV market does make it the main option for the average family and average driver. That’s okay, though, as you’ll find that unless you fall into the extremes of needing a lot of seating or a lot of towing capacity, the LEAF is the affordable answer to your EV dreams.

A white 2024 Nissan LEAF is shown driving on a city street.

Are Electric Vehicles Always More Expensive?

The most concise answer is that an electric vehicle is almost always going to be more expensive initially because of the large battery pack but cheaper in the long run since the fuel and maintenance costs are reduced. Of course, if you barely drive, then it will take quite some time for the savings to occur. On the flip side, if you’re driving all the time, the savings will happen far sooner. The ideal, of course, is to save both when buying and save long term due to lower maintenance costs. Is that possible? In the past, not so much. But that’s changing.

One side benefit of owning an EV worth mentioning before we move on is a more consistent budget. Gas prices can be so unpredictable that month to month, you’re not sure how much cost to factor into your plans. Will prices plummet? Or are we seeing a return to the spring of 2022, where the costs were increasing so fast that gas stations almost couldn’t update prices fast enough? Electric vehicles will save you from being uncertain about a part of your monthly budget, which in turn will allow you to better plan each month.

Loss of a Stalwart

One answer for shoppers on a budget is the Chevy Bolt EV. Or, at least, it was an answer. However, the Chevy Bolt EV will be discontinued at the end of this year. Admittedly, there’s good reason to discontinue it: the Bolt EV has had recall after recall, ranging from minor issues to major issues, like spontaneous combustion. While a very affordable prospect, the Bolt EV may have ended up being too much trouble for what it’s worth. This is a shame, as the Bolt EV initially looked like an affordable alternative for folks wanting to make the transition to electricity while staying on a strict budget. When consumers saw the Bolt EV was leaving, they feared the opportunity for an affordable EV was vanishing. Luckily, there’s an EV we like that can take its place as a smart, economical buy.

The black interior and dash of a 2024 Nissan LEAF is shown.

The Nissan LEAF

We like the 2023 Nissan LEAF quite a bit. Depending on the trim, you can get a range of up to 342 km; that’s a lot of road you can barrel down before you have to worry about a recharge. There are two batteries on offer, a 40 kWh lithium-ion battery for the SV trim and a 60 kWh lithium-ion battery for the SV PLUS trim. The former is less expensive, but the latter will give you a longer range. Both, though, are affordable even when compared to gas-powered alternatives.

The affordability of the LEAF is a blessing as it’s such a versatile hatchback that it can serve a wide range of customers. This is not some niche automobile that will only please a sliver of Canada’s population. It can seat five people, so it’s great for a family but also serves fine for a single driver. There’s plenty of cargo space, especially since you can lower the rear seats. With those seats down, you have 850 L of cargo space. You’ll be able to pack up your luggage or your bike with ease. It’s far less likely you’ll have to worry about what to leave behind when you’re packing for a trip: you’ll have the room for what you need.

In many ways, the LEAF is the ideal EV, particularly for drivers just making the transition. It’s a solid hatchback that rides smoothly, has decent acceleration, and is just the right size. Larger-than-average families and drivers who need more performance will want to look elsewhere, but for a large majority of Canadians, the Nissan LEAF will serve just fine. The manufacturer’s suggested retail price for the 2024 Nissan LEAF is $44,588 CAD, which puts it on even footing with many gas-powered vehicles that have the same features. Used LEAFs you can purchase for even less.

A parked silver 2024 Nissan LEAF is shown charging.

The LEAF Meets Other Expectations

We’ve talked a lot about savings, but when folks hear about affordability, they sometimes assume there are some drawbacks. Yet, the LEAF is known for its comfortable interior and its smart tech. It comes with a competitive warranty that’s specially written for an EV so that you know your battery and electric motor are covered. This warranty includes lithium-ion battery coverage that lasts for eight years or 160,000 km. All those wonderful driving assist tools other Nissans have, like the Safety Shield 360, are also still here. There’s little lost but a lot gained.

The EV Market Is Bigger Than Ever, But the LEAF Stands Out

There are a lot more EVs on the market than even a couple years ago. We know some of the prices can look a bit scary at first glance, but EVs like the Nissan LEAF prove that there’s no reason you have to shell out a lot of extra cash to own an environmentally friendly ride. The EVs that have been around for a bit also come with an extra financial boon: they’re known quantities. This means that maintenance won’t be as hard to find for an affordable price since technicians are more familiar with the ins and outs of the LEAF.

At the end of the day, the LEAF stands as a symbol of our changing world: electric efficiency at an affordable price that will make driving a breeze for the majority of customers. With luck, Nissan’s success with the LEAF means other manufacturers will follow suit and lower their prices. But there’s no reason that you need to sit around waiting for that to happen when the LEAF is waiting for you.