GRA
Posts: 7753
Joined: Mon Sep 19, 2011 1:49 pm
Location: East side of San Francisco Bay

Comparison Test: Tesla Model 3, 2018 Nissan LEAF, And Chevy Bolt

Mon Dec 11, 2017 7:48 pm

Via IEVS and MT: https://insideevs.com/comparison-test-tesla-model-3-2018-nissan-leaf-chevy-bolt/

. . . Notable takeaways:

Let’s get the most obvious out of the way first. The Chevrolet Bolt and Nissan LEAF are no contest for the Tesla Model 3’s acceleration and driving dynamics. However, due to its sportier suspension, the Model 3 doesn’t offer the quiet, coddling ride quality that the LEAF provides. The Bolt falls somewhere in between.

The test drivers said that the Model 3 rear seats were the hardest to access, offered the least amount of space, and felt “sunken in.” The Bolt received the most cred for its rear-seat space and accessibility. Added to this, it offers superb headroom, which isn’t found in the Model 3 because of the sweeping roofline. Speaking of roofs, there were complaints that the Tesla’s panoramic roof lets in too much heat and sunlight (we’ve heard that one before).

Regenerative braking is quite different among the models, and MT does a nice job of spelling it all out for us. In summary, the Bolt and LEAF do a nice job with one-pedal driving. With the Model 3, you’ll find it more necessary to use the brakes more often.

In terms of efficiency (mpg-e), the Model 3 is ahead of the others, but we knew that already.

Finally, there’s some information about Autopilot vs. ProPilot assist. The LEAF’s ProPilot tech, while simple, does what it’s supposed to, and does it confidently. The Model 3’s Autopilot faulters and is still in the update stage. Its performance proved inconsistent, and it’s obviously not ready just yet. However, the system, in terms of hardware, is much more involved than Nissan’s tech and has the potential to be more advanced.

And the winner is …

Brooks and Hong both preferred the Bolt with all things considered (likely assuming the fact that Model 3 pricing is just too out of reach for the average car buyer). Brooks believes that once the longer range LEAF (~60 kWh battery pack/225 miles) comes along, it will give the Bolt more competition. Though he did call the LEAF’s display about 10 years behind.

Hong called the LEAF’s interior outdated, but well-finished. He admitted that the LEAF is a fantastic deal if you don’t drive a lot of miles, but range was the primary issue for him as well.

In the end, MT’s Kim Reynolds concludes that the Tesla Model 3 wins this battle. . . .
Note that the Model 3 as tested was priced at $60.5k.

Direct link to MT review: http://www.motortrend.com/cars/tesla/model-3/2017/the-automobile-2-0-chevrolet-bolt-ev-premier-vs-nissan-leaf-sl-vs-tesla-model-3-long-range/

Re the Bolt's driver's seat, one of the reviewers wrote:
As for seat comfort in general, Brooks found the Tesla’s and Leaf’s front seats more comfortable than the Bolt’s—the Chevy’s bottom cushion is too narrow; its little side bolsters cut into his thighs.
Guy [I have lots of experience designing/selling off-grid AE systems, some using EVs but don't own one. Local trips are by foot, bike and/or rapid transit].

The 'best' is the enemy of 'good enough'. Copper shot, not Silver bullets.

DanCar
Posts: 965
Joined: Sat Apr 24, 2010 12:00 am
Delivery Date: 10 Mar 2013
Location: SF Bay area, 94043

Re: Comparison Test: Tesla Model 3, 2018 Nissan LEAF, And Chevy Bolt

Tue Dec 12, 2017 2:08 pm

In the future Motortrend will learn that the comparison will be better if they talk about refueling options. The Model 3 would get a big thumbs up here.

GRA
Posts: 7753
Joined: Mon Sep 19, 2011 1:49 pm
Location: East side of San Francisco Bay

Re: Comparison Test: Tesla Model 3, 2018 Nissan LEAF, And Chevy Bolt

Tue Dec 12, 2017 6:01 pm

DanCar wrote:In the future Motortrend will learn that the comparison will be better if they talk about refueling options. The Model 3 would get a big thumbs up here.

This is the first time anyone has tested and compared three electric vehicles that really could be your affordable, everyday, one-and-only car. With ranges of 150 to 310 miles and stripper-version base prices from $37,495 to $36,000 before federal and local incentives, they’re full-fledged, meat-of-the-market automobiles. And Tesla’s global Supercharger network is 7,320 (and counting) nails in the coffin of the argument that an EV can’t replace your gas-gulping jalopy as your road trip car of choice.

So, while not explicitly stated, they do mention the SC network as an advantage for road trips. Of course, that advantage will wane as VW and maybe others build serious QC networks. ISTM, though, that they are primarily comparing how the cars stack up for everyday driving.
Guy [I have lots of experience designing/selling off-grid AE systems, some using EVs but don't own one. Local trips are by foot, bike and/or rapid transit].

The 'best' is the enemy of 'good enough'. Copper shot, not Silver bullets.

GetOffYourGas
Posts: 1726
Joined: Tue Dec 20, 2011 6:56 pm
Delivery Date: 09 Mar 2012
Location: Syracuse, NY

Re: Comparison Test: Tesla Model 3, 2018 Nissan LEAF, And Chevy Bolt

Wed Dec 13, 2017 8:28 am

GRA wrote:Note that the Model 3 as tested was priced at $60.5k.


Yeah, this is a perennial problem when comparing the Model 3 to the Leaf/Bolt. They talk about a $35k car, but then base the comparison on a $60k car.

Of course Tesla has not yet built a $35k car, and probably won't for another 6-9 months. When they do, I hope to read a fair shake down of truly comparably-priced cars.

My guess is that by the time Tesla is truly selling the $35k Model 3, that GM will be offering enough discounts on the Bolt to make a fully-loaded copy roughly the same price as a stripper Model 3. To be honest, they are pretty much there now. And Nissan will be offering a 225-mile / 60kWh Leaf, probably fully loaded also, again for the same price. I bet this will happen within 12 months. THAT would be a fair comparison.

GRA wrote:So, while not explicitly stated, they do mention the SC network as an advantage for road trips. Of course, that advantage will wane as VW and maybe others build serious QC networks. ISTM, though, that they are primarily comparing how the cars stack up for everyday driving.


Going along with my previous statement, the CCS/CHAdeMO network will look a whole lot better in a year from now. Yes, the supercharging network will be superior still, but it will not be the only game in town. By the beginning of 2019, you should be able to buy a Leaf, Bolt, or Model 3 and use it as your only car in many places.
~Brian

EV Fleet:
2011 Torqeedo Travel 1003 electric outboard on a 22' sailboat
2012 Leaf SV (traded for Bolt)
2015 C-Max Energi (302A package)
2017 Bolt Premier

LeftieBiker
Posts: 7689
Joined: Wed May 22, 2013 3:17 am
Delivery Date: 31 May 2013
Location: Upstate New York, US

Re: Comparison Test: Tesla Model 3, 2018 Nissan LEAF, And Chevy Bolt

Wed Dec 13, 2017 12:27 pm

My guess is that by the time Tesla is truly selling the $35k Model 3, that GM will be offering enough discounts on the Bolt to make a fully-loaded copy roughly the same price as a stripper Model 3. To be honest, they are pretty much there now.


Indeed. I'm negotiating for a lease on a 2017 Bolt Premiere, loaded, for $37.5k.
2013 "Brilliant Silver" SV with Premium and no QC, a 2009 Vectrix VX-1 W/18 Leaf modules, and 3 EZIP E-bicycles.
PLEASE don't PM me with Leaf questions. Just post in the topic that seems most appropriate.

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