In the USA, the longer-range Leaf is shaping as a pretty neat rival for the as-yet undelivered entry Tesla.

Nissan will price the 60kWh e-Plus Leaf to match the oft-promised, as-yet undelivered entry-level Tesla Model 3 in the USA, according to a new report.

Numbers from Alex Bernstein, a senior pricing analyst at CarsDirect in North America, have suggested the e-Plus model will cost around US$35,400 ($49,600) when it lobs.

With a 225mi (360km) claimed range on the EPA test cycle, the e-Plus offers around 50 per cent more driving than the 40kWh car on a charge. It should also offer better thermal management, opening the door for repeat fast charging without a heat-enforced slowdown.

In the USA, the uprated Leaf will go head-to-head with the Chevrolet Bolt (US$36,620/$51,350) and the entry-level Tesla Model 3.

Elon Musk famously promised a $35,000 electric vehicle for the masses with the Model 3 but, even though production is ramping up, only high-spec cars are being delivered.

Speaking in May, Elon Musk said shipping the minimum-cost Model 3 would "cause Tesla to lose money and die".

So far, only the long-range Model 3 (with a US$44k/$58k starting price) is being delivered, in both single- and dual-motor guises.

“A larger capacity battery lends itself towards two things. One is obvious, more range. The other one, which is maybe a little less obvious, but equally as true, is additional horsepower and output," Brian Maragno, director of electric vehicle marketing for Nissan North America, said earlier this year.