The electric propulsion system of Nissan's all-electric Leaf has been named among the 10 best engines for 2011 by Ward's AutoWorld magazine.

It is the first time in the 17-year history of the magazine's '10 Best Engines' that the selection committee has chosen a power system which doesn't have an engine and will never burn a drop of gasoline, Carlos Tavares, Chairman, Nissan Americas said on Nissan Leaf's achievement.

The inclusion of Nissan Leaf in Ward's '10 Best Engines' demonstrates that the Nissan Leaf can compete with all top vehicles, no matter the propulsion system. Tavares said in a statement.

For 2011, 38 competitors were considered, marking the largest group in the history of the award. The competition included both naturally aspirated and forced induction internal combustion engines, diesels, hybrid electrics and the all-electric Nissan LEAF.

Last month, Nissan Leaf was awarded the title of European Car of the Year for 2011. Leaf, thus, became the first all-electric car to take the prestigious title.

The Leaf, which stands for Leading, Environmentally friendly, Affordable, Family car, is a 5-door hatchback electric car made in United States, with a mileage rating of 99 miles per gallon (mpg). The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has also dubbed the electric car as the best for fuel efficiency and the environment.

Deliveries of Leaf in Japan and the United States are set to begin this December. Deliveries in European countries like Portugal, the Republic of Ireland, the UK and the Netherlands will start early 2011. The zero-emission car is currently being built in Japan, but will also be produced in North America and Europe when new manufacturing facilities open in late 2012 and early 2013.

Nissan has reached its goal of 20,000 reservations for its all-electric Leaf three months ahead of schedule. No further reservations will be taken until next year. Another round of reservations will begin in 2011, after current reservations and orders have been processed.

In United States, Nissan has priced its Leaf at $32,780 plus a not-yet-announced destination fee. As an all-electric vehicle, the Nissan Leaf qualifies for a $7,500 federal tax credit. This brings the price down to $25,280.

Ward's editors named the top ten winners after evaluating 38 vehicles with new or significantly improved engines for the 2011 model year.

The winners, and the vehicles they are in, are:

- 3.0-litre TFSI supercharged V6 (Audi S4)

- 3.0-litre turbocharged I6 (BMW 335i)

- 1.6-litre turbocharged I4 (Mini Cooper S)

- 3.6-litre Pentastar V6 (Dodge Avenger)

- 5.0-litre V8 (Ford Mustang GT)

- 1.4-litre I4 with 111kW drive motor (Chevrolet Volt)

- 5.0-litre Tau V8 (Hyundai Genesis)

- 80kW AC synchronous electric motor (Nissan Leaf)

- 2.0-litre I4 turbodiesel (Volkswagen Jetta TDI)

- 3.0-litre turbocharged I6 (Volvo S60)