2011 Nissan Leaf
John Duncan takes delivery of one of the first 2011 Nissan LEAF EVs, near Portland OR, 12/15/2010Enlarge Photo
We know it may seem like an age since pre-reservations started for the 2011 Nissan LEAF, but unless you’re one of the lucky few who already either has a car or knows when to expect you probably don't know what should be happening after your first $99 has been taken to secure you a place in the Nissan LEAF reservation queue.
Fear not. Production increases from Nissan's Oppama plant should mean that more NIssan LEAFs will be reaching expectant owners in the near future, but we also know how frustrating the wait has been so far.
So what should happen after your initial online $99 deposit has been cashed?
After receiving an email confirming your pre-reservation you should eventually receive an email asking you to choose a local dealer. At the moment not all Nissan dealerships will necessarily sell the LEAF, but if you live in one of Nissan’s initial rollout areas you should have at least one dealer within the 100 mile manufacturer’s quoted range of the LEAF.
However, many states may not even see the sales machine for the LEAF winding up until later on this year. Frustrating as it may seem, Nissan is staging the U.S. launch of the LEAF in a state-by-state and county-by-county way.
After choosing your dealer, you will be contacted to arrange a time to visit the dealership to talk over options and more importantly, give a LEAF a test-drive.
On arrival, you’ll be taken out with the LEAF specialist, who will give you a chance to test-drive the car on a variety of roads. Length of test-drive seems to vary on dealer location and demand for the car that day. Expect at least ten miles or so of driving.
After returning, you’ll have a chance to ask more questions about the car before progressing to finalizing your order.
Your dealer should talk you through the available options, including any accessories, trade-in, purchase protection, charging station installation and lease or purchase plans.
If you’re happy with everything you’ll be asked for a further deposit to confirm the order. You’re unlikely to be given a specific Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) or a confirmed delivery date, however. These will follow later.
After this, there’s not a lot else to do but wait. Your dealer should keep you up-to-date with the order, including any changes to predicted time-scales.
Have you ordered a LEAF? How is your dealer experience thus far? Is it different to this? Leave us your thoughts in the Comments below.