Nissan has confirmed that a longer-range version of the all-electric hatchback, allegedly dubbed Leaf E-Plus, is coming our way, without, however, providing a time schedule.
Buried within a press release announcing pricing details on the 2019 model year Leaf is a single line that announces the model. “A longer-range version will be available in the future,” it reads.
As it stands, the latest-generation Leaf is offered exclusively with a 40 kWh battery pack that allows for a range of 150 miles (241 km) between charges. That’s significantly less than the Tesla Model 3 Long Range, which has an EPA-rated range of 310 miles (500 km).
While Nissan hasn’t said how much larger the battery pack of the longer-range version will be, sources say that it will utilize a 60 kWh pack complete with active thermal management. This new battery pack will apparently be enough to up the vehicle’s range to roughly 225 miles (362 km). While still short of the Model 3, that’s enough for most everyday driving scenarios.
As Nissan used a press release about the 2019 Leaf to confirm the long-range variant, it seems highly unlikely this new variant will be introduced for the 2019 model year. Instead, it is much more likely we will see it launch in the second half of 2019 as a 2020 model.
As for the existing 2019 Leaf, it starts from a reasonable $30,795, including a $895 destination and handling fee. The range-topping SL model is priced from $37,095.
Alongside the aforementioned 40 kWh battery pack, the 2019 Leaf features an electric motor delivering 147 hp and 236 lb-ft of torque.