The Nissan LEAF is such a mainstream car, I often forget it’s electric. That’s a shame, really, because it’s actually a pretty great little electric car, with just a touch more range than the more popular Tesla Model 3 at a lower asking price. Compared to the bigger, even more expensive Model S, the LEAF not only seems like it’s playing in a different league– it’s playing a different game. That’s why it was so surprising to see a Nissan LEAF Plus barrel past a Tesla Model S on the 11th lap of an all-electric car race.

You read that right, kids: the Nissan LEAF Plus will catch– and pass!– a Tesla Model S in a circuit race. Especially if that circuit race involves twist, turns, and (apparently) more than ten laps of action. That’s because the “new”, second-generation LEAF’s battery seems to have superior cooling compared to the Tesla (or, this Tesla, at least) which means its performance is more consistent over longer runs.

It’s hard to say from this one video whether or not this Nissan LEAF Plus’ performance on the track on this day is indicative of any actual advantage over the Tesla’s cooling systems in the regular production cars. That said, the video’s makers seem to indicate that only the wheels, tires, and brake pads have been changed from stock. So, maybe?

Check out the video, below, too see the big race for yourself. It’s fun! Once you’ve enjoyed that, let us know what you think of the whole LEAF vs. Tesla thing in the comments section.


Nissan LEAF Plus v. Tesla Model S | 14 Laps

Participated in all Japan EV races with LEAF e +. The opponent is the last year’s champion car, the high power 4WD Tesla model S. Qualifying was helped by the surface that was semi-wet and gained pole position! However, management is difficult in the final race. Unveiled the 14Lap race uncut! As you are running while you crush, please enjoy. Range 458 km! Is Uri’s new leaf e + (e-plus). While the battery capacity of the first LEAF was 24 kwh, the new leaf is 40 kwh. e + is 62 kwh! At the same time with this capacity increase, the motor is also 110 kw compared to the old 80 kw. e + is 160 kw. Replace “kw” with “ps” and the old one is 80ps, the new one is 110ps and the e + is 160ps. Well, such an image (e + is 218ps if converted correctly). Footwear, tires and brake pads have been changed. The foot is familiar with Neo tune SANKO works tire is ADVAN A052 brake pad is BRIG

Source | Images: クルマで遊ぼう! 大井貴之のSports Driving Labo, via Inside EVs.