The Nissan Leaf 2022 has been in the EV game for more than 10 years, appealing with its low price and nearly 150-mile range, while the 2022 Mini Cooper SE is known for its great handling and plenty of personal styles. Let’s compare them.
2022 Nissan Leaf
2022 Nissan Leaf Starting Price: $28,800
Above-average: Spacious cabin; standard driver assistance features; extensive dealer network; eligible for EV tax credits.
Below average: lots of interior plastics.
Consensus: The 2022 Nissan Leaf has a 149-mile city-friendly range, is pleasant to drive, and has good standard features. If you want more range, you’ll have to upgrade to the more expensive Leaf Plus.
2022 Mini Electric
2022 Mini Cooper SE
Starting Price: $30,750
Above Average: Excellent handling; original styling; numerous customization options.
Below Average: Short mileage; tight back seat; monocoque style.
Consensus: The 2022 Cooper SE is the EV version of the Mini Cooper, with unparalleled style, great driving style and a wide range of customization options. However, the Range makes it a city-only proposition, and the rear area is very tight.
Leaf vs. Mini Cooper SE: Sensible Shoes or Stylish Sneakers
A veteran of the electric car scene for more than a decade, the 2022 Leaf represents the second generation of small electric cars. 149 miles of maximum range makes it a good city car, and a DC fast charger can restore it to 80 percent capacity in 45 minutes. The optional Nissan Leaf Plus has a maximum range of 226 miles but costs nearly $5,000 more. All 2022 Leafs qualify for a $7,500 federal tax credit, which saves even more.
Handling is good, about what you’d expect from an EV, and the Leaf can only be driven with a single pedal. Press to go and lift to slow or stop. There is also a brake pedal for conventional braking.
The Leaf’s 5-passenger interior is clean and simple, albeit with a fair amount of plastic. The higher trim has features like leather and an upgraded audio system. Given that it’s a hatchback, the Leaf is available with 23.6 cubic feet of cargo or 30 cubic feet of folding rear seats. Front space is good, as is rear legroom.
Standard equipment includes keyless start, automatic climate control, and an infotainment system with an 8-inch touchscreen and Apple CarPlay/Android Auto. On the safety front, all Leafs come standard with Nissan’s Safety Shield 360, a package that includes forward-collision warning with automatic emergency braking, blind-spot intervention with rear intersection alert, rear automatic braking, automatic high beams and rear door alert.
Higher trims get things like a 360-degree camera system, a Bose 7-speaker audio system and Nissan’s advanced adaptive cruise control system, ProPilot Assist.
Mini Cooper SE
There’s nothing like a Mini. seeing one on the road tends to bring a smile to your face, and the numerous interior and exterior personalization options only add to the fun. While there have been several iterations as well as 2 and 4-door body styles, the 2022 Mini Cooper electric is only available as a 2-door hardtop.
While the Cooper SE is a great city car, its 114-mile range isn’t quite as good for road trips. However, if you’re ambitious, the Cooper SE can be quickly recharged to 80 percent in 35 minutes.
That may be a cliché. But Minis have been praised for their “slot car-like handling,” and the Cooper SE is no exception. The battery in the floor lowers the center of gravity to improve handling. Combine that with the fast acceleration that electric cars are known for, and the Cooper SE is definitely a pleasure to drive.
Inside, the Cooper is both fun and quirky, despite the tight back seat and meager 8.7 cubic feet of trunk space. Like the standard Mini Hardtop 2-door, the SE can accommodate four passengers.
Standard features include a new 8.8-inch center information screen, Sirius satellite radio, a leather-covered steering wheel and a height-adjustable passenger seat. Safety features include lane departure warning and a forward collision warning system with automatic navigation. It’s worth noting that Apple CarPlay is not standard and is only bundled with the optional navigation system.
Other options include an upgraded audio system and numerous interior and exterior personalization options. Starting at just over $30,000, higher trim prices can climb to nearly $36,000, but it’s worth noting that the 2022 Cooper SE is eligible for a $7,500 federal tax credit.
Eligible for $7,500 federal tax credit; quick acceleration; starting price.
2022 Nissan LEAF Advantages
Range; cargo capacity; interior space; Apple CarPlay standard; NHTSA 5-star safety.
2022 Mini Cooper SE Benefits
Unique style; handling; warranty statement; charging time.
Which one is right for me?
If you’re looking for a practical, spacious electric car with good range, the 2022 Nissan Leaf is a great choice. It’s fun to drive and well-equipped.
For those who prefer personal style over practicality and drive close to home, the 2022 Mini Cooper SE has a unique look and drives great.
Ready to buy a Nissan Leaf or Mini Cooper SE?