Page 1 of 1

Leaf vs. i-MiEV

Posted: Tue, 26 Nov 2013, 06:10
by Shirker
So I've pretty much ignored production EVs to date. Except the dreaded intra-family recommendation has now been called for! I turn to you, my EV knowledgebase... What are the pros and cons of these two pure electric production EVs?

Leaf vs. i-MiEV

Posted: Tue, 26 Nov 2013, 14:10
by coulomb
Shirker wrote: What are the pros and cons of these two pure electric production EVs?

I'll leave the others to fill in the details.

But essentially, the Leaf for space and the iMiev for low purchase price and arguably slightly lower running cost.

Leaf vs. i-MiEV

Posted: Tue, 26 Nov 2013, 14:16
by carnut1100
I test drove both and I own a iMiev.

Leaf is roomier. It is a five seater with acres of room for four. IMiev is limited width wise, and is four seat only. Normal adults are fine front and back, very wide people find it mildly uncomfortable.
Big iMiev benefit is the rear seats have as much head and leg room as the front. Six footers are quite comfy in the back.

IMiev is rear drive Leaf front drive. Can't drift a Leaf....but an iMiev will drift on gravel if you turn off traction control. Which is way more ridiculously hilarious than it sounds....

Leaf has a lot more toys. That can be a good or bad thing depending on your perspective.

IMiev has more user control over regen, but Leaf regen seems to be a bit smarter.

Leaf has a bit more range however iMiev is a fair bit more efficient so uses a lot less power. Goes nearly as far on a much smaller pack.

Been a while since I drove a Leaf but I think it went a bit harder than the iMiev. neither will eat a V8 off the line but neither of them are slow either....full torque at low revs means they are best described as quite nippy.

Leaf interior is probably a little harder to keep clean....more light coloured surfaces.

Leaf interior feels a bit more luxurious. Some of the iMiev plastics feel a little cheap.

Leaf has a cool cumulative economy indicator....trees grow on the dash branch by branch if you are driving economically and lose branches if you drive hard. Gimmick but a cool gimmick.

Overseas experience would suggest that iMiev batteries are better managed and possibly longer lifespan but that is mostly based on hearsay.

Leaf is probably a more practical family car and given a choice I would have bought it especially when there was only a couple of grand difference....but with Leaf at $40k and iMiev from $18-28k I couldn't justify the extra money when the iMiev would do everything I want it to do. The extra seat would come in handy once or twice a month and the extra 20km or so would be a nice buffer and I'm sure I would enjoy playing with the extra gadgets and I like Leaf styling better but those were not worth an extra $20k to me.

Leaf vs. i-MiEV

Posted: Tue, 26 Nov 2013, 14:18
by Gabz
the LEAF is a better car, in terms of size, technology ( bluetooth gps etc) and even acceleration. LEAF has cruise control (i wish i-miev did)

the i-miev is a lot cheaper (if you find a ex-demo), also uses less electricity per km.

I brought an i-miev for $15k less than a LEAF RRP. so i couldn't justify being able to check the charge status from my phone or turn on a/c remotely for $15k.

Leaf vs. i-MiEV

Posted: Tue, 26 Nov 2013, 15:00
by g4qber

I too own an imiev.
The big thing that put me off the LEAF when it came out in 2012 was the "interview". A LEAF electrician was supposed to be sent out to one's house to determine if the electrical infrastructure was suitable. Now Magic / Northside Nissan gets customers to sign a waiver.
Perhaps Nissan was trying to be upmarket and exclusive like Apple.

rear wheel drive; I treat it like a sports car.
less stable, since lighter, noticed this yesterday on the Mitchell Fwy in Perth with lots of crosswind
more efficient MPGe 112
tyres like smart car, front rear different sizes.
no cruise control
no climate control
no preconditioning; Canadian/American does
no onboard timer; Canadian/American does; I rely on hydroponics timer.
satnav can take long time (30 mins to never) to lock on.
satnav speed warning, handy
SUNA traffic; something the volt doesn't have.
2010 had keyless entry, but people were leaving the car switched ON, hence now have key start.
high seating without need to get a softroader; e.g. RAV 4
auto lights come on n off; just like lexus & land rover discovery
4 stars ncap rating
4 seats; even volt has 4 seats
plastics tend to get rough; e.g. seatbelt latch plastic made rough by metal tongue of seatbelt.

steering too light for now, future will be heavier
99 MPGe, heavier 1500kg, but then more stable, 115MPGe next gen
regen weaker, next gen will have stronger regen
out of spec charging 17Amps when EVSE says 16A
better range due to 24kWh battery pack vs imiev 16kWh
space saver spare wheel
tyres same size
better stereo system
carwings doesn't seem to work reliably according to Nikki Gordon-Bloomfield; Nissan giving subscription away free.
keyless entry.
electronic park brake
auto lights work properly, like golf n volt.
5 star ncap rating
5 seats
whine from VFD

Leaf vs. i-MiEV

Posted: Tue, 26 Nov 2013, 15:00
by Johny
Someone should point out that iMiev isn't really sold in Australia any more. Mitsubishi only bring them in for an order. Unless you can find a demo car (which is why previous posts referred to $20-25K pricing), the new iMiev price is actually dearer than the LEAF.

Leaf vs. i-MiEV

Posted: Tue, 26 Nov 2013, 15:08
by Johny
There are a few iMievs still on Carsales. Demo iMiev in Vic for $25K. Probably cost $1K to get it to Perth. Complex for a family advise thingy (hate them).

Leaf vs. i-MiEV

Posted: Tue, 26 Nov 2013, 15:09
by g4qber
John Hughes seems to be selling them for
$31,990 non sat nav driveway price. ... pPYVZFsJCc

approx $35,000 with sat nav

this could be the unofficial price of the imiev
on mitsu website RRP approx $54k

leaf 39,990 driveaway
volt 59,990 + ORC
imiev 48,800 + ORC ... ng-review/

mitsubishi seems to be putting its resources into the Outlander PHEV
and hopefully the next gen CA-miev. ... -info-news

Leaf vs. i-MiEV

Posted: Tue, 26 Nov 2013, 17:42
by acmotor
My two cents worth..
They are both great EVs. You would be happy with either after making a choice. They are almost chalk and cheese though.

There is a very different design philosophy.
iMiEV is minimalist on the in your face features however deceptively competent in the 'just sort it and let the driver get on with driving' department. The leaf as a Mk 1 production EV is amazingly well integrated.

I too tested both at length and there were a number of key points that led me to iMiEV. (I testeed the first leaf to come to Perth) These are very much case dependent to the prospective user. You need to decide what suits your application. Folk's comments may form part of your check list only.

Price.... forget the advertised prices. The only one that matters is the deal you can negotiate. You can't compare using the prices mentioned here. I for one didn't pay anything like the advertised price. In the end, a leaf will cost noticeably more, but then it is more car !

Range... In my tests the leaf had that same range as the iMiEV though did better on range when just cruising. Hills and stop start clearly eat the energy with the extra weight of the leaf and perhaps less regen. This is not reflected in the range numbers for flat earth driving where the leaf had 20% better range. OK, just my observation.

Energy used... Given the above, for my driving the energy was going to be 24kWh vs 16kWh (50% more) for the bigger vehicle. Nothing new since we deal with this in the ICE world (2L 4 cyl vs 4L V6 etc). However when my aim is to generate my power from PV and WT and do 2 charges in a day, the extra energy was not to be taken lightly. Still, the leaf is a bigger vehicle.

I don't know what your hearing is like but the VFD whine in the leaf was like a transfer case in some 4WDs. Cringe ! They will need to work on that one.

Now for that extra money on the leaf, it came with a 3 year warranty (inc battery) and the iMiEV came with a 5 year (in Oz, 8 year US) warranty inc battery and a 10 year mitsubishi power train warranty. (note, the US dont't get the 10 year warranty). The leaf warranty could be extended another 2 years for $2,000 extra..... I'd get that if you were a leaf buyer.
What I am pointing out is that for me, warranty of the most important part of an EV (the battery) was parramount. But my discussions with Nissan showed a serious lack of concern for this EV reality.
How could I spend so much on a 'short' range EV with short range battery warranty. Thoughts of prius's with dead batteries and worth nothing at resale were in the back of my mind.
I only raise that as a concern as it was for me. Time will tell.

I have not heard of any serious warranty issues with either EV.
One iMiEV battery pack with a BMS fault was replaced in the US. A few leaf owners has experienced battery capacity reduction due to heat though not yet at warranty level. I doubt their range is now pleasing their owners. Range is small enought to start with. Spending $40k and then not being able to reach the shops in a few years is scary !

That research for me was nearly 2 years ago.
Would I make the same decision now ?
I have contemplated buying a leaf at $36990 drive away that I was offered, as a 'second car' and ditch the ICE that I keep as backup for the iMiEV.
But in actual transport function the leaf offers little over the iMiEV. In comfort and features maybe nice but I have become used to the new world of iMiEV size and driveability and perhaps the leaf just attempts to replace ICE with EV, not change our concept of vehicles ?

At this stage.... buy a leaf. Go with the numbers. Get the 5 year warranty up front. Don't buy a vehicle the colour of road grime Image. Get a good price, well under $40k.   all unless you want a great little EV with low energy consumption and incredibly driveable, go iMiEV, pick up a demo model under $20k.   Image

Leaf vs. i-MiEV

Posted: Tue, 26 Nov 2013, 19:57
by carnut1100
No question iMiev is the vest value for money....

Leaf vs. i-MiEV

Posted: Tue, 26 Nov 2013, 20:48
by g4qber
Come to the sea nissan test drive this Friday at rac dtec
Will be interesting to see the price offered
Hopefully at least 2k off.
Need to be sea member to get the price. Hence I'm leaving my credit card at home and not joining the sea, just in case I get tempted to switch.

Few months ago there was a 1k off promo to switch to nissan.

Leaf vs. i-MiEV

Posted: Tue, 26 Nov 2013, 21:36
by acmotor
Switch ? you mean sell the volt ? Image I expect you would die at what was offered as a trade for any EV (or pretend EV) on a leaf Image

Leaf vs. i-MiEV

Posted: Tue, 26 Nov 2013, 21:45
by g4qber ... r.html?m=1

please bring the age of Nissan LEAF ownership down thanks.
Perhaps you can call yourself Dr Who?
or maybe Dr LEAF?
are you <50?

switch the imiev. Despite the tripping RCD issue on the Volt, it is a relatively comfortable car. But I guess it is good to have a uncomfortable seat so that one automatically stops after 100km.
the static electric shocks are getting a bit annoying; gotta remember to put hand on roof before stepping out of car.
also the rough plastic on the seat belt.

satnav that sometimes doesn't lock on.

was thinking of getting a tesla roadster, even put $500 down last week, since got refund. ... =0&sdmvc=1

will be interesting to see if the next gen LEAF can be ordered in too.
do they have to sell all their current gen LEAFS first.

Leaf vs. i-MiEV

Posted: Tue, 26 Nov 2013, 22:05
by Johny
g4qber wrote: ... r.html?m=1
please bring the age of Nissan LEAF ownership down thanks.
Perhaps you can call yourself Dr Who?
or maybe Dr LEAF?
are you <50?
I reckon she's an inspiration. Pretty EV savvy for 70. Hope I'm that ready to embrace change at her age (I'm actually not that far off....). Image

Leaf vs. i-MiEV

Posted: Wed, 27 Nov 2013, 00:05
by acmotor
Switch the iMiEV for a leaf ? that is a move upmarket.
The old stock leaf is a lot of EV for the present price. (if you have the cash handy). I wonder what the next gen leaf will offer though ?
If you do, sell your i privately as I'd expect the trade would be disappointing.

The leaf is a better EV than a volt though. The volt has to have a gen set built in 'coz its range is too short. Image

BTW, AEVA (as an association) has reciprocal membership with the SEA so any price special should be up for grabs. Nissan and Mitsubishi are also well aware that nearly all EVs sold privately in Oz have been to AEVA members or through AEVA introduction.


Leaf vs. i-MiEV

Posted: Sun, 01 Dec 2013, 04:34
by offgridQLD
g4qber wrote:the static electric shocks are getting a bit annoying; gotta remember to put hand on roof before stepping out of car.
also the rough plastic on the seat belt.

The electric shocks have more to do with the clothing your wearing and friction on the seat/carpet.

I had a look at that seat belt pics you posted. It looks to me like a dog has used it as a chew toy. There is all little puncture/ teeth marks in it. (Are you sure the family dog didn't get into the car?)

My Imiev is only a few months old but the seat belt receivers look like new and I cant see any way they could end up with all that damage.

Not all the 25k imievs are ex demo models mine was a new car. But I do agree comparisons shouldn't be made as the Imiev isn't available in AU anymore unless you request to import one (most likely at the advertised asking price)


Leaf vs. i-MiEV

Posted: Sun, 01 Dec 2013, 04:49
by g4qber
Lol don't have any animals

At first I thought it was the summer heat. But it is the metal tongue that is hitting the plastic.

I've also noticed that the imiev's plastic is very scuffable
Eg glove box and side door panels.
Also the steering wheel horn

I treat it like a sports car so I am expecting things to eventually fall off.

I almost bought the $129k + Orc tesla roadster until the tesla ranger provided a sense of reason.
Eg rattles and noises will increase with age of a sports car.

Leaf vs. i-MiEV

Posted: Sun, 01 Dec 2013, 05:33
by offgridQLD
g4qber wrote: Lol don't have any animals. At first I thought it was the summer heat. But it is the metal tongue that is hitting the plastic.

I just don't get it how could the tongue of the seat belt put lots of indentations all over the receiver?

Once it plugs in the tongue cant touch the outside of the receiver and when the tongue isn't plugged into the receiver the seat belt retracts with the tongue and rests need the side of the A frame so the tongue isn't anywhere near the receiver then.

It looks like a dog has chewed it or you have used it to tenderize meat


I just took this pic of My seat belt front not a single mark on it, how can the metal tongue hit the plastic when its plugged in. Unless your blindly smashing the tongue with force into the outside of the receiver every time you plug it in? If that's the case then you will damage every cars seat belt receiver.



Leaf vs. i-MiEV

Posted: Wed, 04 Dec 2013, 16:09
by Shirker
Thanks all for a very informative batch of info, analysis and opinion! Very helpful.