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Nissan Leaf charging ports - Click above for high-res. image gallery

As you've probably heard before, there's been quite a stir regarding the availability of fast charging (often called "level three" charging) in the Nissan Leaf. Some reports have suggested that level three capability will only be available on the the upscale SL model Leaf, while others have indicated that fast charge capability will be optional on all Leaf models and can be installed by a dealer at a later date.

Gas 2.0 tried to straighten this one out by talking with Nissan's director of product planning for North America, Mark Perry. Although Perry did answer some questions, the level three status still seems a bit up in the air, to us at least. Perry said that all Nissan Leafs will ship with the level three charging receptacle installed, that's the port on the left in the picture above, but Perry didn't mention whether this port will be fully functional. Now, it could just be that we're critical of how Perry worded his answer and maybe we're digging to deep into this, but it sounds like the receptacle may be standard, but the additional hardware needed to make it functional could still be optional.

Perry was clear about one thing though, all Nissan Leafs will ship with a 25-foot long, "emergency" level one charging cable that will have the J-1772 connector on one end and a standard three-prong connector on the other end. This emergency cable can be inserted into any standard household outlet in the U.S., but fully charging the car using this method will take a very long time – like 20+ hours.

In related news, Mark Perry also discussed the Nissan-developed DC fast charger that was recently unveiled in Japan. Nissan announced not long ago that the unit will go on sale at $17,000 in Japan, a price that undercuts many competitors by tens of thousands of dollars. Well, Perry suggested that a similar unit will be coming to the U.S. and – here's the shocker – it will cost even less here. This could certainly make Nissan a force to be reckoned with in both the EV market and the fast charging business, making it look like Nissan is so far ahead of the competition that it simply can't be caught anytime soon.



[Source: Gas 2.0]


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  • 27 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      Congrats, Nissan, on the Level 3 charger coming in at less than $17,000! That's going to go a long way toward enabling a widespread electric vehicle charging network!

      Months ago I asked a rhetorical question, what if we took an amount of money equal to only one month's bill for foreign oil and used that to build a charger network. Let's update that with this new, lower price for the chargers! How many chargers could we buy for that money?

      Oil imports in April 2010 were $31 Billion ($31,000,000,000) so let's take that number
      Total length of the National Highway System 160,000 miles (256,000 km)
      Total length of the Interstate Highway System 46,876 miles (75,440 km)
      *** note that the National Highways total includes the Interstate Highways ***
      $31M / 17k = 1,823,529.4 of Nissan's Level 3 chargers!

      Without including installation costs:
      Installed along the National Highways: 11.39 chargers per mile
      Installed along the Interstates only: 38.9 chargers per mile

      Now that's a lot of chargers and we could have them in less that 8 years by charging an additional 1% on gasoline sales.
      - - - - - Sources - - - - - - - -
      http://www.pickensplan.com/oilimports/ - source of oil imports figure
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Highway_System_%28United_States%29
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Interstate_Highway_System
      • 4 Years Ago
      What about the EU? 220V-230V Schuko plugs are standard here.
      Won't I be able to plug the Leaf to any plug without an additional charger mounted to the wall?

      I want to plug my Leaf to any 220V-230V Schuko plug with only a cable, just like my Vectrix and just like iMiev can.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Chademo for DC charging.

        The level 2 chargers will connect up to 240V AC... no, don't tell your electrician to wire up your 380 volt AC line to the Level 2 charger.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Does anybody have an idea what voltages Nissan will allow in Europe? Standard for households is 220-230V and most households have 360 -380 volt available for kitchen / dryer.

        And will they use the Chademo or Mennekes plug for commercial fast charging?
      • 3 Years Ago
      just last night, my nissan leaf said my battery life was up to 101 miles, as soon as i step in on the freeway it drops on 70 miles battery life, and im going to a 86 miles destination. in the middle of my trip try to plug in to any place that i ask and willing to pay, nobody let me plug in my regular charger. we need a level 3 charger that wont cost us another car ($ 17,000.00) ....
      • 4 Years Ago
      $17,000?!?!!!?!! Good Lord that's a lot-a-money! How 'bout this... how 'bout I just plug it in the dryer socket and keep my money.

      I'm guessing this is intended for curbside charging in public places, or either wealthy people's vacation garages.
        • 4 Years Ago
        O...k.... not a lot of Chris Rock/In Living Color fans here... Cheap Pete? Anybody?

        But I am glad that it is targeted at commercial use. Anybody know how much a 220v charging station runs?
        • 4 Years Ago
        the 220v charger is anticipated to cost about $2200 installed, before 50% tax credit.

        The hardware is less than half of that price, so if you already have a suitable 220v line to your garage, your price would be less. Also, it would probably vary depending on your area (what rates liscensed electricians charge there).

        For a round number, figure ~$1000 installed after tax rebate.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Around $2,000 from Nissan I believe. I am not sure if that includes the wiring.
        • 4 Years Ago
        This is talking about the charger for the 80% charge in 30 minutes. It is actually very cheap compared to comparable existing chargers (in the $30-50k range).

        The 220V charging station for 8 hour charging is about $2k installed if I remember correctly.

        I imagine there will be dryer socket adapters coming out from the aftermarket soon after the car is released (assuming there isn't some issue with the J1772 spec).
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Matt $17K is a major price reduction. It has been over $30K ... yes, this is a commercial fast charger.
        • 4 Years Ago
        level 1: typical wall socket 110-120v.
        level 2: 220v charger, household circuit usually used for dryer, stove, water heater etc.
        level 3: Above 14.4kw per hour. Unlikely to be installed in a house unless you are very rich, in which case plunking down 17k for another toy is pocket change.

      • 3 Years Ago
      i just got my nissan leaf i cant go anywhere because of the charging problem. i need a level III charging (fast charging) to be able to go further than 50 miles ( freeway ), or im stuck in a city driving....
      • 4 Years Ago
      Now you can have your very own car charger installed in your business or industrial residence for only slightly more than...... buying a new car!

      ;)

      • 4 Years Ago
      1) A 30 minute fast charger is meant to placed at centers of commerce and intercity travel passages. They are meant to be almost the equivalent to gas pumps. Which typically costs from $25k - $30k.

      2) Unlike Levels 1 & 2 chargers which simply ( and safely ) feed the 3.3kw onboard charger... the Level 3 fast charger is a direct DC line to the battery. It shouldn't need anything beyond the receptacle.
      • 4 Years Ago
      "Perry said that all Nissan Leafs will ship with the level three charging receptacle installed, that's the port on the left in the picture above, but Perry didn't mention whether this port will be fully functional. "

      And the reason Nissan would install a non-functional receptacle is ... ?
        • 4 Years Ago
        "Your new fossil burner car will come with the spout for gasoline but we don't know if the pipe that actually connects it to the gas tank is included."

        Sounds kinda dumb.

        /Of course the Leaf will include the wiring and associated hardware for Level 3 charging. The only thing that could change in the future is the shape of the plug.
        • 4 Years Ago
        "The only thing that could change in the future is the shape of the plug."

        Upgrades to the car's software might become necessary too, hardly a showstopper though.
      • 4 Years Ago
      jake said, " imagine there will be dryer socket adapters coming out from the aftermarket soon after the car is released (assuming there isn't some issue with the J1772 spec)."

      Yea, who needs there glorified surge protector. Give me the after market dryer socket adapter that fools the j1772 plug into thinking it is plugged into a charger so I can charge off any dryer socket and save the charger install and hardware costs. Good old line cooker, right David Martin?


        • 4 Years Ago
        If you can afford the car, you can afford $1000 to install the charger. Charging off/with a non-approved could potentially:

        1) Burn your house down, as someone mentioned (insurance won't pay either if not to code)
        2) Electricute you
        3) Completely void your LEAF warranty
        4) Ruin your expensive set of batteries
        5) Set your car on fire

        But hey, other than that, its a great idea to save $1000 right? You'll have the charger forever, it could easily be used to charge EVs for many years to come. Pay the $$ and do it right so that you don't have to worry about it later if things go wrong, your insurance, or Nissan's warranty or Aerovironment's will cover you, and you might even be still alive to talk about it. If you can afford the car, you can afford the charger.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @ everyone
        I guess the insurance issue is pretty huge when talking about aftermarket solutions (and I'm not really talking about cheap ebay stuff, but from reputable dealers like EV components, which unfortunately is closed, but that is another discussion).

        I just see that it seems unlikely Nissan will release a 220V mobile charging kit (none of the major manufacturers seem like they have one planned). This may have to do with the J1772 spec. I think EVs seriously need it though, so if not aftermarket, at least an official kit.

        However in terms of installed J1772 chargers there is already a UL certified third party option:
        http://green.autoblog.com/2010/03/13/clippercreek-now-taking-orders-for-ev-charger-with-new-j-1772-co/2

        A GFCI and also temperature diodes to detect overheating is basically what Tesla is doing with their kit and it seems to work fine. I don't know if it violates any electrical codes, but Tesla has been selling their kit for a couple of years, and they don't have any disclaimers about it.

        The logic box is to draw the correct amount of current, so the load is safe for the socket and wiring. You can be conservative at 220V@24A for safety and that is still 3x faster than 110V charging. There is no way 110v/220v charging can affect the battery, since 110v/220v going to the car is handled by an onboard charger (with rectifier to step up to the charging voltage of the battery which is 300+V in all modern EVs). Only the TEPCO socket with DC charging directly connects to the battery.
        • 4 Years Ago
        You know those adapters will pop up all over ebay.. but also note that everytime you have a fire and a BEV is parked in the garage that will be the first thing they will check. What we need is a 220VAC dryer socket that automatically shuts off once it overheats... actually all sockets should do that.
        • 4 Years Ago
        No, I'm actually serious. I'm talking about something akin to Tesla's Universal Mobile charger and the Roadster Foundry mobile charger. One end connects to the car, the other end can work with all kinds of adapters to common sockets. In between is a box that handles the charging logic to communicate with the car (for the Tesla one there is also a GFCI in there for safety). I can see something similar for the Leaf (and other J1772 cars).
        http://www.teslamotors.com/electric/charging.php
        http://www.teslamotorsclub.com/showthread.php?t=2889

        There are also more exotic solutions, like having two 120V extension cords to two out of phase sockets to achieve 220V charging.
        http://www.teslamotorsclub.com/showthread.php?t=2998

        110V really is next to useless for charging except for very short distances. Having a 220V mobile charger is very useful longer trips, where you can take advantage of power sources at RV camps and also more powerful sockets at a friend's or relative's home when visiting.
        • 4 Years Ago
        EV,
        Whatever you choose to do yourself please do not encourage others to invalidate their house insurance! If there is a fire they could loose everything.
        That is aside from the risk of personal injury, as most of the general public couldn't put up a bookshelf without risking injury, let alone fooling with the electrics.
        Those who know how to do it won't need your advice, those who don't should steer clear!
        • 4 Years Ago
        @jake, I am not kidding. I find it damn inconvenient to not be able to plug into any dryer outlet. My friend made this box for me from Home Depo parts. I plug into two different 110v outlets and I get 220 out of the two 110's. It will not work if GFI's are in the circuit and it will not work if you are plugged into 110v on the same circuit but other than that it works. I think it sucks the Leaf will not charge off my buddies dryer outlet like my current car. No pun intended.

        My big bad ass, ultra powerful, 0-60 in 2.9 seconds EV below.

        http://www.evalbum.com/1892

        Oops, typo 0-60 in 11.9999999999 seconds.
        • 4 Years Ago
        lol dude just solder a dryer plug to it wtf u guys thinking $2000 lol
      • 4 Years Ago
      EV,
      Whatever you choose to do yourself please do not encourage others to invalidate their house insurance! If there is a fire they could loose everything.
      That is aside from the risk of personal injury, as most of the general public couldn't put up a bookshelf without risking injury, let alone fooling with the electrics.
      Those who know how to do it won't need your advice, those who don't should steer clear!
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