Well, it looks like that new, more affordable version of the 2013 Nissan LEAF is hitting ye olde sweet spot with EV buyers. Now on sale with a starting price that’s some $6,000 lower than for the 2012 model, the LEAF had its highest monthly sales volume ever in this country: 2,236 deliveries that marked a 286.2 percent year-over-year increase and helped Nissan's all-electric LEAF outsell the Chevy Volt for the first time in more than a year.
As a reminder, the MSRP for the 2013 Nissan LEAF is a friendly $28,800, and with $7,500 in federal tax credits, the net cost to drivers is a mere $21,300; in California and other states with their own incentives, that amount can drop even further. (See: http://www.autobytel.com/nissan/leaf/news/nissan-net-price-of-2013-nissan-leaf-slashed-to-18-800-115033/.)
March also saw a new name charge to the top of the first-quarter EV sales rankings: the Tesla Model S. According to the folks at the Hybrid Cars Dashboard, who provided all the numbers here, the Tesla S delivered approximately 1,950 units last month to become the best-selling plug-in vehicle in the country through the first three months of the year. The car’s Q1 sales of about 4,750 units were 500 more than the No. 2 player, which was the Chevy Volt, with 4,244 sales during that time.
Overall, sales of plug-in vehicles climbed 84.3 percent last month, albeit on just 7,632 deliveries that represented 0.53 percent of the market. Other notable EV/plug-in performers last month included:
- Toyota Prius Plug-in—786 sales, -11.8 percent
- Ford C-MAX Energi—494 sales in its first March on the market
- Ford Fusion Energi—295 sales, also new in March
- Ford Focus EV—180 sales, also new in March
- Toyota RAV4 EV—133 sales, also new in March