Budget EV Battle: Nissan Leaf Takes On VW e-Golf And Renault Zoe

If you’re in the market for a small or compact electric car, looking at the likes of the Nissan Leaf, VW e-Golf and Renault Zoe makes perfect sense, since all three are well aimed at specific segments and buyers with specific needs.

So while you’re likely to be happy with any one of them, pointing out all the differences is a must, which is something What Car? did quite well in this lengthy, in-depth comparison review – and they even picked a winner at the end.

The first test they ran concerned acceleration, where the Leaf (the most powerful car here) left everything in its dust, hitting 60 mph (96 km/h) in 8.2 seconds. The e-Golf, on the other hand needed 9.0 seconds, whereas the Zoe, at 13.0 seconds, was considerably slower.

Yet, its the VW that comes out on top with regards to driving pleasure according to the reviewers. It has the best steering feel, best road manners and feels more sophisticated overall than its electrified rivals. It’s not perfect, though, and it’s certainly not as sporty as petrol or diesel versions in the corners, because of its heavy battery pack.

The Leaf is comparable to the Golf on the road in certain ways, but in the end falls short, as does the Zoe, which is “outclassed” by the other two.

The review ultimately walks us through pretty much everything we need to know – from practicality to comfort, tech features, EV-range, charging times and so on. As for who the winner is, we’ll let you find our for yourselves (well, it’s not the Zoe, is it?).

  • Christian Wimmer

    All of these cars have been tested and none of them even come close to their claimed range, even under ideal driving conditions.

    But if I had to pick one here as my daily city car driver I’d go for the Renault Zoe. It’s just so damn cute.

  • alexxx

    Leaf is the obvious choice.I guess.

  • Dr Strangefingger

    Why no Bolt? Must be skaird…

  • Paul

    It depends on your country and what is available to you. In the US I would take the Leaf.

  • Autoexperte

    the Leaf is the best choice today

  • MIL1234

    the zoe is a clio
    it’ s not the same segment

  • Darnell Robeson

    Meanwhile the American-made Chevy Bolt/Opel Ampera E has a longer range AND is quicker that all 3

  • smartacus

    Not worth it.

    Motor Trend
    just tested a
    238 mile Bolt
    and it took 20
    hours to go on
    an 800 mile trip.

    A normal car has
    400 mile range so
    it can go 800 miles
    with only a fillerup.

    Anyone who ever
    had to drop every
    thing and go on a
    long trip in a family
    emergency, knows
    how helpful it is to
    just hop in and go.

  • Mis Mintowt-Czyz

    Like the review says, it completely depends on your circumstance/ requirements. For me, I do a 90 mile commute, want to keep the costs down and want a nice quite ride. I managed order a new Zoe for 13k. And based on the savings I will make on fuel alone, it pays for the outlay of the car within 5 years! (just for info: I currently drive a 1.0 VW up! and cost me £8 a day in fuel.). VW eGolf Wouldn’t get me to work and home again with contingency. The Leaf is just a way too pricey to get a good ROI. So the obvious choice is the Zoe! (plus personally I think its the best looking ca by far… but that just me 😉 )