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Technology Award 2018: Nissan Leaf

The Nissan Leaf wins the Auto Express 2018 Technology Award for its bi-directional charging

Many things have impressed us about the new Nissan Leaf. It’s good to drive with a realistic range of over 150 miles and it comes packed with tech not available on many cars at this price, let alone EVs.

But what stands out above all is the thought that’s gone into electric vehicle ownership and making that more appealing and cheaper for more people.

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The Leaf is the first car to come with something we think is a slice of genius: bi-directional charging. This means that a Leaf can not only take power from the grid, but also feed power back in; Nissan claims that this could mean you pay nothing to charge your Leaf if you use it right.

So how does it work? Nissan is working with energy supplier OVO on its Vehicle To Grid (V2G) system that will enable you to buy power to charge your car when it’s at its cheapest and sell any surplus charge in your Leaf’s battery back to the grid when demand is high. Play the system correctly and it could leave you quids in.

If you don’t fancy that, Nissan Solar will sell you solar panels for your roof and a battery to store that power for when you need to charge your car up. Who said Tesla had a monopoly on good EV ideas?

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On top of all this, the Leaf is one of our favourite electric cars – good to drive, with plenty of space and decent performance. Its clever e-pedal means you can genuinely drive it with one pedal, such is the extra braking for regenerative power when you lift off the throttle. And for less than £30k you can have a car with ProPilot Level 2 autonomy and a whole host of luxury technology, too.

Auto Express New Car Awards 2018

For complete, in-depth coverage of the 2018 New Car Awards, buy your collector's edition copy of the Auto Express magazine now or click here to subscribe...

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