2025 Nissan Leaf Is the Cheapest New EV You Can Buy

2025 nissan leaf
2025 Nissan Leaf Is the Cheapest New EVNissan
  • The 2025 Nissan Leaf starts at $29,280 before incentives, the same as the 2024 model.

  • The Leaf continues with two battery choices, with the base model returning a 149-mile range.

  • The Leaf is one of just five EVs that are currently being sold under $35,000.

The second-generation Nissan Leaf, first launched in 2018, soldiers into 2025 as the cheapest new electric vehicle on sale in the United States. The base Leaf S starts at $29,280, which is unchanged from the 2024 model year and doesn't include the available $3750 federal EV tax credit that effectively drops its price to $25,530. While the Leaf's powertrain is certainly dated, it's hard to argue with such a low price.

The Leaf S packs a 40.0-kWh battery that provides an EPA-estimated 149 miles of range—dismal in 2018 and downright laughable in 2024. Upgrading to the SV Plus ekes out 212 miles of EPA-rated range from its 60.0-kWh battery but sees the price jump to $37,330, calling the Leaf's value play into question.

The Competition

Still, the Leaf is one of just five EVs currently available in America with a starting price below $35,000, and its closest competitors don't perform significantly better. Take the 2024 Fiat 500e, which only recently reached U.S. dealerships despite being on sale in Europe since 2020. The diminutive hatchback opens at $34,095 but manages just 141 miles on a full charge.

2024 fiat 500e
Marc Urbano - Car and Driver

The 2024 Mini Cooper Electric, meanwhile, starts at $31,895 but lags behind the Leaf with just 110 miles of range. Mini is preparing an updated version that should be capable of around 200 miles when equipped with the bigger battery option. But changes to the tariffs applied to EVs imported from China has delayed the next Cooper Electric's U.S. launch, since the hatchback will be built in Zhangjiagang, China.

Another sub-$35K EV option is the 2024 Hyundai Kona Electric ($34,050). A tad shorter than the Leaf, the Kona Electric is significantly larger than the others—around 20 inches longer than the Mini and nearly 30 inches longer than the Fiat. It also sports a modern SUV look and offers 200 miles of range from its base SE model, which has a 48.6-kWh battery. Upgrading to the SEL brings a 261-mile range estimate from a 64.8-kWh battery, but the price leaps to $38,050.

The final option is the Fisker Ocean. While the Ocean's original price was significantly higher—over $60,000 for the Extreme trim—the company's financial challenges have resulted in massive discounts. New 2023 Ocean Extremes are going for $35,500, and the Ultra model, previously a $55K car, is being offered just below $35K. The base Sport model is advertised at $27,437, although it doesn't appear there are more than a handful available right now.

2023 fisker ocean

The price is certainly attractive, especially given the Fisker's upscale looks, potent dual-motor powertrain, and EPA-rated range of 360 miles. Still, buying an Ocean means trusting in a company on the verge of bankruptcy and hoping the SUV isn't still plagued with the software issues that last year affected early models. If Fisker doesn't make it through this tumultuous period, it's unclear how owners will have their Oceans repaired if something goes wrong.

Coming Soon

A strong alternative to the Leaf is a used Chevrolet Bolt EV, which was discontinued after 2023 but cost just $27,495 in its final model year. With 259 miles of range, the Bolt was a great affordable choice. Chevy says it's bringing the nameplate back on a new entry-level EV, and we expect to see it by the end of next year.

2024 chevrolet equinox ev driving down a small town street

Chevy is also poised to have another sub-$35K EV when it finishes rolling out the new Equinox EV. The base 1LT trim is set to cost $34,995, but it is not yet available; the cheapest Equinox EV you can currently find is the 2LT at $43,295. The Equinox EV—which has a 319- or 285-mile range depending on the spec—also qualifies for the full $7500 tax credit, making its price even more appetizing.

The Leaf is certainly due for a replacement, and a replacement is expected to arrive within the next couple of years. In the meantime, the Leaf remains one of the few affordable new EVs you can buy, as long as you stick to the base Leaf S grade.

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