The interior offers more of the exterior's under-the-radar design. It's logical, utilitarian, spacious, well-equipped, well-built - and underwhelming. It's perfectly fine until you start comparing it to the elegant, minimalist interior of the Model 3. The standard specification is, however, very generous. As standard across the whole range, you get automatic climate control and keyless entry with push-button start. The driver's seat is six-way manually adjustable on the S, while the SV Plus has an eight-way power-adjustable driver's seat. All trim levels get a four-way manually adjustable front passenger seat, and an impressive collection of advanced safety features.
The Leaf is perfectly suitable for five people. The driver and front passenger have loads of space, with legroom measuring in at 42.1 inches and headroom at 41.2 inches. Things are a bit tighter in the back, with only 33.5 inches of legroom. Headroom for those in the rear is 37.3 inches. Adults wouldn't want to sit in the back for too long without taking a break, but luckily the Leaf can't do more than 212 miles without also taking an hour-long break. Both the Chevrolet Bolt EV and Tesla Model 3 offer more leg- and headroom for the rear passengers.
|Nissan Leaf Trims||S||SV PLUS|
|Headroom Front Seat||41.2 in.||41.2 in.|
|Headroom Back Seat||37.3 in.||37.3 in.|
|Legroom Front Seat||42.1 in.||42.1 in.|
|Legroom Back Seat||33.5 in.||33.5 in.|
|Shoulder Room Front||54.3 in.||54.3 in.|
|Shoulder Room Rear||52.5 in.||52.5 in.|
|Hip Room, Front||51.7 in.||51.7 in.|
|Hip Room, Rear||50 in.||50 in.|
To offer the Leaf at such a low price, Nissan had to cut costs somewhere. This is where it's most noticeable. It's plastic as far as the eye can see, but it's worth pointing out that it is solidly bolted together. Nothing reveals a squeak quicker than an EV, and the Leaf has none. Both trim levels are adorned with quality black cloth upholstery. With the demise of the SL Plus trim this year, the option of leather upholstery disappears as well. The SV Plus gets a heated, leather-wrapped steering wheel.
The Nissan Leaf is one of the most practical EV offerings out there. While the Tesla Model 3 and Chevrolet Bolt may offer more room for rear passengers, the Leaf has both of them beat when it comes to cargo space with all seats in use. With the rear seats in place, the Leaf offers 23.6 cubic feet of space. The Tesla runs it close with 23 cubic feet, but that is a combined figure for the trunk and frunk. The Bolt has 16.9 cubic feet. The rear seats fold flat in a 60/40 split, offering up to 30 cubic feet of space if you need it - which is, unfortunately, worse than its rivals.
In terms of interior storage spaces, the front passengers can store smaller items in front of the shift knob, the glove box, and center-console storage bin. There are two cupholders for the front passengers, and four bottle holders throughout the cabin.
|Nissan Leaf Trims||S||SV PLUS|
|Max Volume||30 in.||30 in.|
Nissan must have been in an extremely generous mood when deciding the various spec levels for the Leaf, because it is packed. The base S comes with active ride control, automatic halogen headlights, and 16-inch steel wheels with plastic covers. It's on the inside where you really get bang for your buck, though. The base model has cruise control, automatic temperature control, keyless entry with push-button start, and driver-assistance features like auto emergency braking with pedestrian detection, as well as front/rear/blind-spot collision intervention. Move up to the SV Plus and you get 17-inch alloy wheels, navigation, fog lights, heated front seats, adaptive cruise control, and a leather-trimmed steering wheel. The S has a 50-kW quick-charge port. SV Plus models come with the larger 60-kWh battery, a more powerful motor, and a 100-kW quick charger. SV Plus cars also add an auto-dimming rearview mirror, a power driver's seat, a surround-view monitor, and intelligent driver-awareness assistance.
In cars with no engine noise or vibration to hum along to, an infotainment system becomes all the more important. Sadly, the base sound system has only four speakers, with two added in the SV Plus, with neither option offering anything to write home about. Both trims have a SiriusXM Radio with a three-month subscription included, at least.
Infotainment is managed from an eight-inch color touchscreen. It runs an operating system called NissanConnect, which is very user-friendly and intuitive, and comes with all the modern connectivity necessities. It has Bluetooth streaming, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and Sirius XM. The SV Plus has standard navigation.