04.09.2010 - by Richard Kelly
How to Reserve a Nissan LEAF

Nissan Leaf - Rear View
photo: Nissan Leaf Gallery
So you want to buy a LEAF? Nissan laid out a rough outline of their ordering process in a February press release.


Nissan says that “registrants will be given first priority” to reserve the car. To be more specific, this means that people who registered before April 20th will get an email inviting them to make a reservation. People who don’t register by the 20th will have to wait until the priority period is over on May 15th. When the general public period starts, however, they will be able to register and make a reservation in the same session.

So if you want a LEAF and you haven’t already done so, visit the official signup page and get on the mailing list. As of this week, over 100,000 people have signed up.

Am I on the List?

If you’re not sure whether you’re signed up, the easiest way to verify is by seeing if you’re getting the “Nissan LEAF News” email. The last one went out March 30th. Or, you can use Nissan’s Live Chat feature and a customer support rep can check for you.

Making My Reservation

On April 20th you’ll get a personalized email from Nissan letting you know your reservation window is open. At this point, you’ll want to follow the embedded link and make your reservation.

When reserving a car, you won’t have to pick a trim level, color, or even state whether you’re planning to buy or lease. That will all be firmed up later.

At some point in the process, you will be asked to link your account to a local Nissan dealer. Nissan may suggest a dealership in case you don’t have a preference. If you’re not familiar with your local dealers, I suggest visiting them first to see which one has the best customer service. However, don’t expect them to know much about the LEAF yet. The first dealers won’t start getting trained until October.

The $99 deposit through the LEAF site is all you need to commit at this point. You should not need to place an additional deposit with your local dealer at this time.

— Richard Kelly

4 comments on “How to Reserve a Nissan LEAF”
  1. Re. our coming Nissan Leaf purchase:

    We’ve been so impressed by our first Nissan car, we now own 2 of them.

    I’ve been driving and using a solar photovoltaic charged Taylor Dunne electric heavy duty 36 Volt DC (golf cart like) warehouse truck on our horse ranch successfully for 12 years now.

    I’ve lined up a solar contractor to grid connect our house PV solar to the grid, for $13,000, adding to our already 75% solar run residence/ranch. The property uses an Edison Utility TOU (Time Of Use LED Display) meter that allows us to pay aprox. 1/2 the per kwh rate (off peak from 6:00 PM to 10:00 AM on weekdays and weekends, and 4 US major holidays) than all our area’s neighbors pay, running a regular spinning meter.

    Estimated gasoline savings per month, $240; financed cost of solar per month, estimated $120, via *mortgage home improvement refi.. Electric bill per month we’ll be paying Edison using the solar and Leaf, about $20 (since we already have huge battery backup capacity for nightime charging).

    About only reason we will still bother staying on the grid is to power our water well, which of course entails having no water bill whatsoever except the electric to run the pumps (well hole and boosters to irrigate our garden and orchard).

    A grid connected solar on-site electrical system increases the real estate value of a residence from 10 to 30 thousand dollars.

  2. Richard Mara says:

    I have been hooked up to pluginamerica ever since I saw the movie “Who Killed the Electric Car”. We have a 7 Kw photovolaic system & are looking forward to having an EV to tie into our solar power. Hope Nissan goes all the way and makes a really great car. We put a lot of money in our photovoltaic aray and are not afraid to spend money on quality, energy efficient products. We have a Miele clothes washing machine that cost over $ 1,900., for example.

  3. This number is the count of people signed up on the LEAF mailing list. No one knows how many will actually make a reservation.

    The first LEAFs are slated to roll out at the end of the year. I’d expect to see car magazine reviews in the upcoming months.

    Finally, according to Nissan, the reservation fee is fully refundable. So yes, Nissan does get to hold your C-note. But in exchange, you get first right of refusal on the car.

  4. I’m really amazed that over 100,000 people have already signed up, because nobody has actually test-driven the car. And I’m still waiting for a review by a car magazine. All that is known is that the Nissan Leaf is electric, and that it comes from a pretty respected manufacturer.

    I guess that’s enough for many people, but I would never commit myself to buy a car I haven’t driven before.

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