Just a few short weeks ago, it looked like a longer range LEAF wouldn't be in the works for the foreseeable future due to complications from Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn's arrest due to financial improprieties. Well, it looks like things are clearing up, at least for the new LEAF e+. It was just unveiled at CES this week, and it should be a great draw for those looking for more EV range than the regular 150-mile version. 

nissan leaf e+ front 34
The new LEAF and LEAF e+ look far less strange than the first LEAF. 

The e+ delivers 226 miles of range on a single charge because of the new 62 kWh battery pack. The base car has a 40 kWh battery, hence the shorter range. The new e+ also benefits from a faster charging system that actually comes very close to the base LEAF's times. The base LEAF can charge up to 90 miles of range in 30 minutes. The e+ will likely wind up to 135 miles of range in 30 minutes of charging. Not too shabby. The peace of mind the short charge time gives means most folks will be able to use the LEAF e+ throughout the day and evening hours without much delay at all.

nissan leaf e+_ profile

The LEAF isn't exactly a land rocket, but Nissan gave it more gumption, as well, to the tune of 201 horsepower and a rather impressive 250 lb-ft of torque (up 54 and 14, respectively). The e+'s top speed is 105 mph, and passing speed from 50-75 mph takes place 13 percent quicker. No times have been provided. Don't plan on drag racing a muscle car with the e+, but getting up to highway speeds should be easier. 

nissan leaf e+ rear

Other improvements include an updated e-Pedal system, better pedal modulation in reverse mode, and increased regenerative braking capability that helps the e-Pedal bring the LEAF e+ to a stop better than in the base car. In terms of looks, the body looks exactly the same, but there are blue trim pieces in the front fascia, new badging, and an e+ logo inside the charging port. Inside, the e+ gets a bigger 8-inch touchscreen with improved software. 

nissan leaf e+ interior
The basic LEAF interior doesn't change much except for an upsized display.

The LEAF e+ still gets air-cooled, which sadly doesn't help charging speeds due to battery heat. The result is a lower cost overall compared to competitors that offer liquid cooling, a more efficient way of doing things. The old system from the base LEAF is still present, but that doesn't mean the LEAF e+ isn't still an excellent EV to consider. 

nissan leaf e+ battery
The battery size stays within the LEAF's dimensional limits, a very good thing.

The base LEAF's MSRP is $30,875, and though no official pricing has been released for the e+ version, expect about $6,600 of an upcharge. The good thing is that Nissan is now offering a model that comes closer to long-range small cars than before. The Chevy Bolt boasts 238 miles of range, a bit longer than the new LEAF e+ and pretty much the same cost. It'll be interesting to see how the LEAF e+ will sell in light of how successful the Bolt has been.

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