The Nissan Leaf was an ever-popular pioneer for electric car buyers but a hotly anticipated new version promises more. Paul Beard discovers whether it lives up to the hype.
Scotland has been an important part of my life for almost thirty years now and for many reasons, including time spent living in the Highlands. You can imagine then my delight at being asked to spend a couple of days in the southwest of this fair land, attending the UK launch of the second generation Nissan Leaf. Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park is an area I hadn’t visited before and it certainly didn’t disappoint.
I boarded a small turbo-prop aircraft at Exeter airport and was soon airborne – my first experience of flying, I might add – heading towards Alba. At Glasgow Airport, I met up with the Nissan UK team and climbed aboard a shiny red Leaf, my co-pilot none other than Nissan GB’s Electric Vehicle Manager. Just before we departed, I was told that there was a challenge running, with a prize going to the driver who arrived at the overnight accommodation with the most charge left in their battery – well, a bull I certainly ain’t, but that sure was a red rag!
Having stowed my overnight bag and anorak in the cavernous boot (435 litres, unless you opt for the Bose Soundbar, which makes it a wee bit less), we set off in what can only be described as a very attractive car – most will be white but the Magnetic Red livery of my steed certainly added a little extra class; all colours suit the new Leaf, the only one I’m not keen on is the pale Spring Cloud Green but no doubt it will have its admirers. More conventional looking than the previous model, the new car should certainly have a wider appeal, which is what Nissan hopes to capitalise on.
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