Parkers overall rating: 3.9 out of 5 3.9

Should you buy a Nissan Leaf?

Yes, because it's an electric car that's usable for most people. The second-generation Leaf is significantly better to drive than the old one, has a longer range and won’t scare the kids at night with its appearance. Nissan clearly set out to make the old Leaf more appealing to new buyers without frightening the old ones, and it has certainly succeeded.

Now the Volkswagen e-Golf is no longer with us, it pretty much has the EV family hatchback market to itself. Currently, we'd recommend you go for the car with the biggest battery pack you can afford. That would be the Leaf e+ with its 62kWh pack that will eventually become the default-choice. Although most EV owners don't stretch the range of their cars, it's good to know that there's more in hand when needed.

The only other choice comes down to specification. If you’re looking at owning with a view to moving on reasonably early (up to three years), we’d advise getting the best-equipped model that your monthly payment will run to. You’ll enjoy a car with all the toys, but also, selling a car to tech-savvy early(ish) adopters will always be easier if it’s laden with interesting kit to impress them on the test drive.

Not only is it relaxing to drive, shrugging-off city driving with ease, it’s also practical and – judging by the previous model's long-term performance – is likely to prove highly reliable as well. We just wish the interior were nicer, and the controls were laid out in a more logical manner.

Does all that make it a highly-recommended choice? Yes and no. There are some impressive new EVs on the market, although not so many pitched right at the heart of the family car market like the Leaf is. The Peugeot e-208 and e-2008 are probably the best of the opposition until the Volkswagen ID.3 turns uplater in 2020. Yes, it's a little bit strange compared with the e-208 or Vauxhall Corsa-e but not everyone wants an EV that looks like any other car.

Read more

>> The Parkers guide to Electric cars
>> Best cheap electric cars
>> Best affordable used cars
>> Best EVs and electric cars: CAR magazine's guide

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