Weekly Car Lease Deals: Go Electric

by Jordana Sackel

After several months of setbacks due to COVID-19, automakers are finally back to greeting customers with generous lease deals. 

When compared to buying and financing a vehicle, leasing generally requires lower initial investment and taking advantage of a zero money down offer can help you save even more money, and let's be honest, that's on everyones mind in this current climate.

It’s important to keep in mind that lease deals do have limits based on location and the specific models to which the offers apply. There are also strict mileage limits, and many lease deals are often only available to customers with excellent credit scores.

The U.S. News Best Price Program can connect you with multiple local dealers to help you find retailers with online lease and home delivery programs which provides a safe environment to make the lease or sale of a car even easier.

Regardless of which type of vehicle you’re planning to lease, the most significant considerations are overall quality and value. While hybrid and electric vehicles offer shoppers great fuel efficiency and savings, there are other variables that you should factor into your final decision. This week, we take a look at two great contenders who are sure to impress: The 2020 Nissan Leaf and Chevy Bolt.

The Chevy Bolt

The 2020 Chevy Bolt is an all-electric hatchback with a long driving range, spacious cabin, and an affordable price tag. For 2020, Chevy has extended its electric driving range from 238 to 259 miles on a single charge which has The Bolt leapfrogging ahead of its EV rivals, and making it accessible to just about everyone. With generous passenger room and a zippy powertrain, the Chevy Bolt 2020 truly delivers. The Chevy Bolt’s composed ride, with plenty of power and almost-instantaneous acceleration, makes it a truly enjoyable drive.

One of the only negatives reported was that the large, well-organized, modern touchscreen was not as responsive as users would like and built-in navigation wasn’t available, so one had to rely on a smartphone for directions (Apple CarPlay and Android Auto capability comes standard). 

As with most hybrids and EVs, Chevrolet provides extra coverage for some of the Bolt's electric-powertrain components. Chevy also includes the first maintenance visit for free. 

The Chevrolet Bolt is an excellent example of a competitive electric vehicle option and truly worth checking out (notably picked as one of Edmunds' Cheapest Electric Cars for 2020). Look forward to guilt free cruising, happily knowing that your Bolt is creating zero air pollution as you get where you want to go.

The Chevy Deal

People can  lease a brand new 2020 Chevy Bolt for as little as $154 a month through Costco, you could be driving an electric car for less than what some people pay for gas monthly.

Costco members are now eligible for a $3,000 bonus when buying or leasing with a dealer in Costco’s network. If you’re planning to lease, the offer can be combined with a $5,750 national lease incentive for $8,750 in potential savings.

Chevy is also offering a $1,500 bonus if the buyer is currently leasing a 2015 or newer GM product (or that of a competitor) for a total of $10,250 in savings. As a result, the 2020 Bolt LT can be leased for as little as $194 for 36 months with $194 due at signing in most parts of the country based on a 12,000 mile/year lease. If you live in the San Francisco area, you are eligible for an additional bonus of $1,400.

To take advantage of these offers, people must have been members of Costco as of September 1 or they can join up at any Costco store that opened after August 31, 2020.

The program ends January 4, 2021, but Cars Direct warns that GM could make changes to the various incentives or adjust terms.

The 2020 Nissan Leaf

While most carmakers are still up to two years from launching their first standalone mainstream electric vehicles, Nissan is launching a full second generation of the Leaf. The Nissan Leaf was the first mass-market electric vehicle to come to the US when it debuted in 2011. The Leaf produced a loyal and satisfied customer base from its first generation. This cost effective vehicle comes with a convenient home charging system, is an easy drive, and simple practicality makes it an obvious choice for buyers looking to go green.

Nissan has enhanced the 2020 model with more standard driver-assistance features and includes an 8-inch infotainment display with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration. The 2020 Leaf has deeply cushioned seats and a spacious interior for passengers along with a cargo capacity that is considered to be among the best in its class. The 2020 Leaf is also one of the more affordable EVs around with low maintenance costs and attractive pricing.

The Leaf can be plugged into a regular 120-volt outlet or a 240-volt outlet, but the charging times vary dramatically between the two. On a 240-volt connection, Nissan says both the standard Leaf's battery and the larger one in the Leaf Plus can be replenished in seven hours. The standard Leaf models all come with a 40-kWh battery which provides a relatively limited range of 150 miles. 

The Nissan Deal

Nissan introduced 90-day payment deferrals if you finance through Nissan. For September, Nissan is offering a $4,000 rebate on the 2020 LEAF. All versions of the LEAF are also eligible for a Federal tax credit worth up to $7,500 until 30th September. If you happen to live in California, buyers can also enjoy the Clean Vehicle Rebate worth $2,000 subject to income-based restrictions. 

Our top choice for leasing was the 2020 LEAF S 40kWh for $258 per month for 36 months with $2,999 due at signing. With 10,000 miles per year this electric vehicle is a great deal with an effective monthly cost of only $341.