It’s official – Nissan no longer taking reservations for the LEAF

by Ernie Hernandez on April 26, 2012

Dollar sign

$99 reservation fees already received to be refunded

The Nissan LEAF reservation process – that confusing and sometimes maddening (for some) system – is no more. Anyone with an active reservation will receive a refund within 6-8 weeks according to Nissan’s LEAF website. In fact, this is the exact wording on their site now:

$99 reservation fees are now being refunded.

Nissan LEAF™ no longer requires a $99 reservation fee. if (sic) you paid a $99 reservation fee, it will be automatically refunded in 6-8 weeks.

There is still an ordering process, but it seems as if some Nissan dealerships are starting to build inventory, at least on the west coast. We just did a search of Nissan LEAF on Autotrader.com and came up with the following results:

New 2011 Nissan LEAFs available nationwide – 256.

52 available within 500 miles of Los Angeles

New 2012 Nissan LEAFs available nationwide – 861.

203 available within 500 miles of Los Angeles

So it would appear that roughly 20-25 percent of all new units are available in the Southern California market. So then we thought we would check used inventory – available just through private parties – no dealers.

Used 2011 LEAF – 3 available nationwide. Lowest price – $27,995

Used 2012 LEAF – 1 available nationwide. $36,000 (good luck with that)

Also, just for reference, we went back to some early predictions for the valuation of a used LEAF by Glass’s, the UK’s equivalent of Kelly Blue Book apparently. Back in 2010 they predicted the value of a five year old used LEAF at less than $5,000. We thought they were off then, and as time goes by we have to wonder what they were drinking when they came up with their guess.

From this information we can tell a couple of things. Many people developed cold feet after they placed their order – whatever the reason. This left orphans sitting on dealers lots and now they are starting to accumulate. We would think that one could get a pretty good deal on a 2011 sitting on a lot right about now. Of course, that depends to a degree on how many there are in your area. But it might make a short trip worthwhile.

The better bit of news that we glean from this is that LEAF owners, once the LEAF is in their possession, are less likely to want to part with it. So those that followed through seem to be happy enough to want to keep their cars.

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