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2020+ Bolt vs. 2019+ Leaf Plus

4195 Views 24 Replies 14 Participants Last post by  BoltEUV
Curious what folks who have driven (or own) both have found in terms of comparison.

Going by the specs, the Leaf is bigger, slower and not able to DCFC as well due to lack of active battery cooling (and limited CHAdeMO availability), but it seems like range and overall utility should be fairly close?

Does the Leaf allow for one-pedal driving?

Any general information on battery degradation in temperature (coastal) climates?
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And that's not even considering the battery issues.
Can you specify? As a Leaf enthusiast and someone active on MNL since mid-2011, sure, the pre-4/2013 Leaf batteries were terrible and the 30 kWh ones weren't good either but it seems the 40 kWh and 62 kWh are holding up ok, so far. Yes, the 62 kWh packs are relatively new as the car didn't ship in the US until Spring 2019.

Yes, I'm well aware of no pack thermal management and rapidgate, esp. on 40 kWh packs.

If someone's looking the equivalent of Surround Vision, you need to get a Leaf with Around View Monitor. I had that on both my '13 Leaf SV (which both had premium packages). Go to specs tab of and search for that in the appropriate section.

If you skip to ~6:40 of the video at Nissan LEAF Might Have A Good Fast Charging Curve With Active TMS, you'll find that Leaf Plus on a "50 kW" EA charger that's outputting over 50 kW (actually 68 or 69 kW), its DC FC rate is actually better than Bolt. He was still at 50 kW at 67% SoC and didn't fall to 37 kW until about 80% SoC. It only crawls at 94% or so (12 kW) which isn't unlike a Bolt that full.

I'm not clear how often/common EA "50 kW" CHAdeMO handles are capped at 50 kW or uncapped.
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My neighbors have orders in on every one I am aware of, for several years now. Nobody has actually delivered one. They are not impressed.
There are supposedly thousands of such systems in use in Japan. See and The link to the paper is dead but a copy can be found at Wayback Machine.

Unfortunately, this doesn't help us much in the US and yeah, CHAdeMO is pretty much toast in the US. To me, it will go into period of decline. EA's almost non-support of CHAdeMO (1 CHAdeMO handle at each site vs. 5 to 7 CCS and as many as 19 CCS) will get even worse outside CA:
I know them by reputation only and by the fact that despite earlier problems they still didn't see fit to do decent thermal management of the battery.
Indeed. As you might imagine, many Leafer and MNLers were also very disappointed about the lack of battery thermal management (raises hand). But, it doesn't really matter for milder climates from a degradation POV (e.g. Pacific NW, the UK, city of San Francisco and probably lots of Canada). For DC FCing, yes rapidgate is an issue but not everyone DC FCes at all or often.

And, it took time to tell how the 40 kWh and 62 kWh batteries held up as the 30 kWh turned out to be turkeys.
My 2014 LEAF was generally a nicer car to drive than the Bolt but lacked range, Battery state of health of the improved "Wolf Pack" or "Lizard Pack" chemistry whichever it had, was still good with 80% at 86,000 and 7 years which would equate to the cycles of a Bolt with 200,000 miles. The 30 kWh packs in the 2016 were less good again. Don't know about the new 40 and 60 kWh packs. Check the LEAF forum. Lesser ground clearance on the LEAF Plus though.
You had the "wolf pack" as LeftieBiker at MNL termed it as did I. My last Leaf was built 5/2013 and had LeafSpy SOH around 79.xx% when I sold it with about 68K miles a few months ago. Was down 1 capacity bar, soon to be 2.

Nissan referred to the informal term "lizard" at for the more heat resistant 24 kWh pack that went on model year '15 and presumably '16 original S. Since we found the US Leafs built 4/2013 thru model year '14 seemed better than the garbage pre-4/2013 packs, Leftie came up with "wolf pack". I think he calls the pre-4/2013 "canary packs".

For 30 kWh, when those were dropping very badly, he decided to call those "lettuce packs". A fix did come out to fix the reporting: and but it does seem post-update, those 30 kWh packs are worse than "lizard" packs.
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For me, if I get a good buyback amount (I'm in CA) and I was informed on Friday that Bolts are banned from my work (still trying to get that resolved), going backwards to a Leaf as a temp EV is a possibility. Might even have to go back to a non-Plus (only 40 kWh, ~150 mile range) gen 2:eek: to avoid overpaying...

Disregarding this battery recall mess, although the Bolt is overall a huge step forward from my former '13 Leaf (e.g. range (game changer), acceleration (Bolt is WAY faster), battery thermal management, etc.), nice large LCD, CarPlay, lots of safety features n/a back on my old Leaf, '19 Bolt Premier has many quirks and thus numerous things my '13 Leaf did better. And, the gen 1 and 2 Leaf interiors to me are of better quality than the crap '19 Bolt interior. Also, Bolt drivetrain is noisier.

There are too many to list like the center nose inlet location is way better for public and workplace charging, source selection for the stereo is not great on Bolt, '13 SV w/premium package Around View Monitor was much better than '19's Surround Vision, camera button on bezel to activate Around View Monitor w/1 press vs. multiple steps and waiting for infotainment system on Bolt, no quirky auto headlight switch/controls that puts unnecessary cycles on HIDs (bad for them), missing clock and outside temp display on the in front of the driver gauge cluster (is on gen 1 Leaf's eyebrow). Bolt's delayed charging/timer UI is daunting vs. the simple UI on touchscreen Leafs. Bolt's Surround Vision has this stupid auto-exit behavior if you mute or adjust the stereo's volume. Bolt has no 1% increment SoC display and instead if I have to rely on now buggy and unreliable My Chevrolet app.

I could go on and on but am busy w/my day job.

My seat time w/gen 2 Leaf ('18+) is limited though. I spent about 45 minutes test driving one before they went '18 Leafs went on sale in the US and I've poked around a bunch at various EVents.

Power seat didn't become an option on Leaf until gen 2, which I've never owned/leased yet.
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Yep. Gen 1 Leafs had EPA range ratings from 73 to 107 miles w/107 being on the 30 kWh Leafs that were only for 2 model years.

Gen 2 (2018 to current) are available in 40 and 62 kWh versions. 40 kWh non-Plus EPA range rating is ~150 miles. 62 kWh Plus version (went on sale in the US starting around Spring 2019) has 200ish mile EPA range rating with the lowest trim S Plus having more range than the higher SV and SL trims.

One can look these up at Compare Cars Side-by-Side.
Well, sure, multiple DC FCs on a Leaf in a day can drive into the red on its temp gauge. Or, I guess high ambient temps can push it fairly high. 117 F is pretty crazy. Ever wondered how Hot your battery can reach and still be funtional? - My Nissan Leaf Forum got his battery up to 137 F (~58.3 C).

I'm in a hotter part of the SF Bay Area but I've never seen its temp gauge that close to red and I monitored actual sensor temps via Leaf Spy (the app that guy used) instead of the crap temp bars. Also, my last Leaf, a '13 didn't even have a CHAdeMO inlet so it's not like I could roast it from DC FCing. L2 charging barely heated up the battery.

I also took steps to keep the battery cooler while it was at work (see below):
However, if I were really hardcore, I would've charged it overnight outside only instead of charging it all at work. But L2 charging is free at my work and I don't like paying Pacific Gouge & Extort to charge at home.

Yes, it seems like the 40 kWh packs (available on non-Plus model year '18+) are holding up pretty well from a degradation POV. The 62 kWh packs on Plus Leafs seem to be holding up ok too, but they're kinda new. Leaf Plus didn't go on sale in the US until ~Spring 2019.
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