Green

Nissan’s scarce Leaf tops green cars of 2011

Automotive valuation guide Kelly Blue Book named the Nissan Leaf electric vehicle  the top green vehicle of 2011.

Kelly Blue Book is a widely used guide for car shopping — with terms like “blue book” and “blue book value” actually trademarked when referring to prices for a car.  The company said the Leaf won out with a “ground-breaking combination of range, room and price.” The Chevy Volt, an electric car with a range-extending gas engine, came in behind the Leaf as the second best green car of 2011.

But only 453 Leaf vehicles have made it stateside to date. There are around 20,000 active reservations in the U.S. for the Nissan Leaf. And Nissan seems to face a setback in the Leaf’s production every time it turns around — whether it’s a glitch in the system or a massive earthquake that stalls the car’s production line. The Leaf is an ambitious electric vehicles with a low (by electric vehicle standards) price tag — still a hefty $33,000 — designed to attract more casual drivers to the electric car market and labeled by Kelly Blue Book as the first electric car for the masses.

Here’s a list of the top 10 electric cars of 2011, according to Kelly Blue Book:

1. 2011 Nissan Leaf: 99 miles per gallon equivalent
2. 2011 Chevy Volt: 93 miles per gallon equivalent
3. 2011 Toyota Prius: 50 miles per gallon (51 city, 48 highway)
4. 2011 Lexus CT 200h: 42 miles per gallon (43 city, 40 highway)
5. 2011 Honda Insight: 41 miles per gallon (40 city/43 highway)
6. 2011 Ford Fusion Hybrid: 39 miles per gallon (41 city/36 highway)
7. 2011 Volkswagen Golf TDI: 34 miles per gallon (30 city/42 highway)
8. 2011 Hyundai Elantra: 33 miles per gallon (29 city, 40 highway)
9. 2012 Fiat 500: 33 miles per gallon (30 city/38 highway)
10. 2012 Ford Focus: 31 miles per gallon (28 city/38 highway)