With many 2016 model details already released by other makers, the specs of the 2016 Nissan Leaf electric car remain conspicuously absent as the U.S. heads toward its Labor Day holiday.
But a posting by a Nissan dealer in Indiana suggests that high-end models of the coming year's Leaf will feature a larger battery pack to give them more range, possibly "as much as 110 miles."
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The dealership, Andy Mohr Avon Nissan in Avon, Indiana, has a page on the 2016 Leaf on its website.
It says, in brief, that the base Leaf S model will continue with today's 24-kilowatt-hour battery pack, giving an EPA-rated range of 84 miles.
While an incrementally larger battery has been expected for the 2016 Leaf for some time now, a choice of pack sizes (and hence ranges) fleshes out the picture a bit, if true.
2016 Nissan Leaf description page, Andy Mohr Avon Nissan in Avon, Indiana, Aug 2015
"Drivers of higher trim levels will enjoy a battery with as much as 25 percent increased capacity," it says, "delivering a driving range of as much as 110 miles."
Unless Nissan adds a new top-of-the-range version, those "higher trim levels" are the Leaf SV and the more luxurious Leaf SL.
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With a crop of new mass-priced electric cars expected to start arriving late in 2016 with ranges of 150 to 200 miles--the 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV first among them--the existing Leaf with its 84-mile range appears to be having trouble sustaining U.S. sales momentum.
It's still by far the world's best-selling electric car, but the Leaf's U.S. sales over the last 12 months have fallen to 15,000, compared to 22,000 in the previous 12-month period.
2015 Nissan Leaf 4-door HB SL Dashboard
2015 Nissan Leaf
2015 Nissan Leaf
And similarly-sized all-electric competitors with battery ranges between 80 and 90 miles now include the BMW i3 and Volkswagen e-Golf as well as the Ford Focus Electric and Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive.
As the dealer site notes, the "release date and pricing are still tentative" for next year's Nissan Leaf.
The dealer site says nothing about pricing, which would likely be announced only a few weeks before the 2016 Leafs go on sale.
Assuming the larger pack is indeed coming, Nissan is likely debating how much--if anything--it can charge for the increased range, or whether it should be a running upgrade to boost 2016 sales in advance of the car's anticipated replacement for 2017 or 2018.