11 Best & Worst Nissan Leaf Years (2024 Data)

Source: Nissan

Nissan was one of the first automakers to enter the hybrid vehicle market, and this little five-door electric hatchback Nissan Leaf was the one that started it all. However, our experts want to let you know about a few Nissan Leaf years that you should avoid.

We’ll go over the most problematic Nissan Leaf years you should avoid based on NHTSA reports and general model issues, and we’ll also suggest several year models that are worth considering.

The worst years to avoid the Nissan Leaf are 2011, 2013, 2015, 2016, and 2020. The best years to buy the Nissan Leaf are 2012, 2017, 2021, 2022, 2023, and 2024. This result was concluded from trustworthy sources such as NHTSA, Edmunds, Repairpal, Kelley Blue Book, and even some Nissan Leaf forums.

Nissan Leaf GenerationsBest Nissan Leaf YearsWorst Nissan Leaf Years
1st generation2012, 20172011, 2013, 2015, 2016
2nd generation2021, 2022, 2023, 20242020

Worst Nissan Leaf Years to Avoid

A few models of Nissan Leaf that have a reputation for being unreliable are listed below.

  • 2011 Nissan Leaf
  • 2013 Nissan Leaf
  • 2015 Nissan Leaf
  • 2016 Nissan Leaf
  • 2020 Nissan Leaf

5. 2016 Nissan Leaf (3.75 Rating)

Source: breezcar

The 2016 Nissan Leaf is the model year you should avoid. The most common problem with this model is the electric battery not charging. Moreover, at around 16,000 miles (25749.504 km), you will notice that the battery runs out quickly. The airbag light is another problem noticed in this car. Brake failure on startup is also noticed.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints

4. 2020 Nissan Leaf (3.59 Rating)

Source: blog.cheapism

The 2020 Nissan Leaf is not a very reliable year; however, due to numerous reliability issues, you should think twice while buying it. This car has many problems with its electrical system. Problems with the power inverter, diminished range in cold weather, problems with the automatic emergency braking system, and deteriorating batteries are other major complaints.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints

3. 2011 Nissan Leaf (3.58 Rating)

Source: fleet.be

When it came to the 2011 Nissan Leaf, battery problems were the biggest issue. Aside from the longer charging times and rapid degradation of its battery, its limited range of 75 miles (120.7008 km) per charge was another major drawback.

There were issues with the airbags in the Nissan Leaf as well. Because of this problem, owners had to repair a lot of parts, including seat sensors and even the front seats, which was a major hassle.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints

2. 2015 Nissan Leaf (3.14 Rating)

Source: carexpert

The brake system is the most common and serious complaint from owners of this model. The issue was supposedly caused by a malfunctioning intelligent brake unit. It should also be kept in mind that the 2015 Leaf can only go 84 miles (135.184 km) on a single charge of its battery.

The other most frequently encountered issues with this model are malfunctioning brakes, warning lights, and the sound of clicking.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints

1. 2013 Nissan Leaf (3.05 Rating)

Source: motorbox

The 2013 Nissan Leaf is by far the most problematic Leaf model you can see in its history. Defective brakes were a common issue with the 2013 Nissan Leaf. When the owners applied the brakes, the vehicle did not come to a halt.

Another issue was that it would accelerate automatically, even when the driver didn’t touch the accelerator. Airbag sensors and defective seat belts were other issues with this model. In critical situations, the seat belts did not work either.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints

Which Nissan Leaf Years Are Most Reliable?

While the Nissan Leaf is generally dependable, we’ve highlighted some exceptional model years below. Also, you should expect better longevity from these Nissan Leaf model years.

  • 2012 Nissan Leaf
  • 2017 Nissan Leaf
  • 2021 Nissan Leaf
  • 2022 Nissan Leaf
  • 2023 Nissan Leaf
  • 2024 Nissan Leaf

6. 2022 Nissan Leaf (3.78 Rating)

Source: thecarconnection

The 2022 Nissan Leaf is one of the most dependable models in the lineup. Even though it has a starting MSRP of $28,495 and is a fantastic electric car for daily trips, it still retains most of the innovation from the firm.

A 40.0-kWh battery is standard on all Leaf models, although it only allows for a limited range of 149 miles (239.79 km). The pro pilot assist is one of the most noticeable features of the 2022 model; however, it is only available on higher trim levels.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints

5. 2021 Nissan Leaf (3.81 Rating)

Source: nissanusa

The 2021 Leaf is a great pick because of its swift and seamless acceleration, a suite of driver-aid systems, and peaceful interior. Although the base S trim is perfect for beginners, we suggest the slightly more expensive SV Plus trim for those who want a bigger battery and more power.

An electric motor producing 147 horsepower (109.61 kW) is standard on base versions, with a 40.0-kWh battery pack. However, on the Leaf Plus, the powertrain is upgraded to 214 horsepower (157.397 kW) with a 62.0-kWh battery.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints

4. 2023 Nissan Leaf (3.90 Rating)

Source: 16valvulas

The 2023 Leaf has a lot more practicality and a better range than previous generations, making it a great pick. It is reasonably priced, has practical technological features that make driving easier, and is relatively quiet.

You can get roughly 149 miles (239.79 km) out of the lesser battery, and about 215 miles (346 km) out of the most powerful battery pack. The 2023 model year has a redesigned front end featuring an illuminated Nissan emblem and a drop from five to two trim levels, among other changes.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints

3. 2012 Nissan Leaf (4.06 Rating)

Source: thrillist

The 2012 Nissan Leaf is a great pick for used car owners, though it has a range of only 70 to 100 miles (112.654 km to 160.93 km). It was given the Seal of Awesome from carcomplaint.com. Edmunds also picks it as one of the best-used cars, trucks, and SUVs.

Produced in large quantities, it was the first “real” battery-electric vehicle. Its design is both unique and futuristic. Its electric powertrain is likewise quiet and silky smooth.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints

2. 2017 Nissan Leaf (4.20 Rating)

Source: carsuk.net

The 2017 Leaf is another model year from the first generation that has proven to be an extremely dependable vehicle. There is plenty of room for a small car’s load, and the cabin is nice and quiet.

You can still anticipate 107 miles (172.2 km) of driving range from the 2017 Leaf. The 2017 Leaf is an excellent pick for those on a low budget, but a more recent model with more range might be worth the extra money.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints

1. 2024 Nissan Leaf (4.44 Rating)

Source: nissanusa

The 2024 Nissan Leaf is the most recent year and is among the most dependable years in the brand’s history. Improved range, fewer issues with body parts, and better sustainability are some of its noteworthy features.

The Nissan Leaf, which doesn’t need fuel and costs less than $30,000, demonstrates that electric vehicles may be inexpensive. The usual driving range of the base 2024 Leaf is around 150 miles (241.402 km).

When it comes to the Leaf’s standard comfort, it’s hard to find complaints. The Leaf has comfortable seats that are both supportive and ergonomically designed; the seats are roomy without being stifling.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints

What are the Common Nissan Leaf Problems?

Older Nissan Leafs could be a pain to maintain, though. Some of the most typical issues with Nissan Leafs are:

  • Activating the braking system.
  • Inverter issues with hybrid systems.
  • Vehicle shutdowns.
  • Mishaps caused by an ineffective defogger.
  • Problems involving the airbag mechanism.
  • Electrical systems, specifically in the Nissan Leaf 2016.

See a professional immediately if you have any of these car maintenance problems.


How reliable are Nissan Leafs?

Generally speaking, a Nissan Leaf is a dependable vehicle. When looking to buy a used Nissan Leaf, there aren’t many years to avoid as there are years when the model has a reputation for reliability and excellence. The most dependable Nissan Leaf models are the ones released in 2021 and later.

How much do Nissan Leafs cost to maintain?

The average annual maintenance expense for a Nissan Leaf is $748, according to repairpal.com. However, the price of some repairs, such as replacing the motors for the radiator fans or the air conditioner compressor, could be substantially higher.

What is the average lifespan of a Nissan Leaf battery?

With regular charging and maintenance, the battery life of a Nissan Leaf can easily exceed ten years.

Note: Here we’ve compiled a list of the best and worst years for each Toyota Prius model, so you can narrow down your search for the ideal eco-friendly vehicle.

Brief Wrap Up

There are many reasons why the Nissan Leaf is a popular and reasonably priced electric vehicle. Buying a newer Nissan Leaf will allow you to do your bit for the environment while still providing a fantastic driving experience. We would recommend you avoid the first-generation models. 

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