2015 Nissan LEAF

I bought this car off-lease, certified pre-owned (CPO). It’s a base model Nissan LEAF S that keeps the miles off my Golf R, will be something for my oldest to learn to drive in a couple years and it also happens to be quite inexpensive to operate. It also reminds me how awesome the Golf is when I drive it.

The LEAF replaces my Mercedes CL600 which was horrendously expensive to operate. In fact, the two are opposites in just about every way. And there is no way I’m turning loose even the most responsible new driver in a 600 lb-ft, 2¼ ton missile of mayhem. The finance person at the dealership launched into her de rigueur banter, asking if I was excited about my new car. Clearly she hadn’t looked at my dossier from the sales department yet. I explained how I was trading two turbos and twelve cylinders of tire-melting joy for no turbos and no cylinders. No, I’m not particularly excited, I said with a smile. But it was interesting to go through a finance department that ended with them cutting me a check.

This car is so meh I don’t yet have a photo of it to share. It is a complete disaster of design and driving dynamics — easily the ugliest car I’ve ever owned, it’s not a particularly pleasant cabin and not at all exciting to drive. Sure, it has an instant-torque electric motor, but that’s largely blunted by this car’s first generation modern battery electric vehicle (BEV) design and mission of economy. On the plus side, it is also an entirely livable BEV with enough range that I can comfortably charge it at my office exclusively despite my 50-mile two-way commute. How’s that for cost-of-ownership? (I sincerely appreciate my company for providing EV charging as a perk and all my coworkers for sharing the expense. A decent work-from-home policy would be a lot better, though.)