• Sep 28th 2010 at 2:03PM
  • 13
Nissan Leaf – Click above for high-res image gallery

When General Motors filed a trademark request for the oft-discussed term "range anxiety" the company lit a fuse, upsetting a handful of automakers. Tesla and Think immediately fired back at GM by releasing statements. First, Tesla vice president of communications, Ricardo Reyes, declared:
By all means, GM can have "range anxiety." To Roadster owners, the term is as irrelevant as "gas stop" or "smog check." We are, however, looking into trademarking "Tesla grin."
Later, Think global marketing director, Michael Lock, offered us some choice words that bashed GM's limited technology and called the attempt to trademark "range anxiety" a form of "kindergarten marketing."

Nissan stood idly by, offering no comment on the GM trademark subject. Now, the company behind the battery-powered Leaf is taking a stand by offering a fee-based roadside service program that's aimed at removing "range anxiety" from the electric vehicle equation. The service, which costs 1,500 yen ($18 U.S. at the current exchange rate) per month, includes unlimited roadside assistance. By signing up for the service, Leaf owners are assured that if they ever do run out of juice, help is just a phone call away.

The program works like this: Nissan will transport drained Leafs and their owners to the nearest dealership for a recharge. If Leaf owners incur any expenses due to running out of juice, Nissan will foot the bill. That is, provided that the costs don't exceed the cap of 550,000 yen ($6,500 U.S.). In addition, the service program includes free vehicle inspections every six months.

For now, this service is only offered in Japan, but we'd expect that this range-anxiety-quelling program, or at least something similar to it, will be available stateside soon.

[Source: Nikkei via Nissan-Leaf]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      I think you will see something like this offered here in the states - though probably without the expenses covered.
      It provides a nice gimme that dealers can throw in for free for a few years or something.
      It's great because it seems valuable to the owner but really cots very little to provide.
      ...and while you have people their at the dealer waiting - they might buy some other tidbit etc...

      The other nice thing to offer would be low cost rental/loaner vehicle for extended trip use.
      That would be very pricey to implement though I think - as you have to manage insurance and the number of plates available - and vehicle available for usage.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Nissan acts.
      GM talks.
        • 4 Years Ago
        The Volt will also come with a roadside assistance feature via OnStar. It could be argued that the OnStar system does more to alleviate on-the-road concerns by providing a feature that can do everything from sending emergency help in the event of an accident to flashing your lights or honking the horn if you lose your car in the parking lot.

        "There’s a unique once a month dedicated Volt OnStar vehicle diagnostic email that is an email from your Chevrolet Volt that tells you how it is doing, that will give you the diagnostic information on the car itself, and will coach you in terms of how to get the most out of your Volt making sure that tire pressure is optimal and all of that stuff as well."

        GM offers the first year - and longer - of OnStar service for free with the Volt, in contrast to Nissan - who also requires you to make the phone call on your own dime.

        • 4 Years Ago
        I still like Nissan better.
        Nissan's chairman never said global warming is a crock of s*** ( verbatim, nonetheless )
        Nissan's never dragged their heels at fuel economy standards or complained about them.
        Nissan didn't sell the patent for a battery that could be driving electric cars *today* to Texaco/Chevron!

        I don't think GM's heart is in this; they refuse to make a pure EV even though they know damn well how to do it.
        • 4 Years Ago
        As others have said, at least in the US the first 3 years for Nissan is free.
        I'm not quite sure how anyone is going to run out with all the bells and whistles screaming at you, but no doubt someone will manage it.
        Journalists will be queing up to be the first to experience this 'problem' with the Leaf.
        • 4 Years Ago
        GM's advertising campaign, negativity and sledging have got up my nose.....
        • 4 Years Ago
        I like both GM and Nissan, but to be completely honest - and ignoring the OnStar system's GPS "guardian angel" quality - it's much cheaper to simply join AAA.

        Even the Premium Level membership costs less than either Nissan's or GM's roadside service. Of course, many business offer discounts to AAA members; my own business gives a 30% discount when you show your card.

      • 4 Years Ago
      I look forward to commuting in my Leaf in bad weather, when the highway is a parking lot: Dare I run the heat or A/C, or play the radio, and still hope to make it to my destination?
      It should be a pleasant, relaxing trip.
      • 4 Years Ago
      how does this justify anything? People must be really dumb to buy this car.

      "It's no problem if I run out of juice, I have free roadside assistance...that I pay for."

      Really? Do you really feel comfortable saying that? When it keeps happening to you over and over again, then you'll feel even more like an idiot...or maybe not....when it comes to electric vehicles, you get what you pay for...Tesla > Volt > Leaf.
        • 4 Years Ago
        It fascinates me that you think others in this discussion will feel like an idiot.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I thought 3 years of roadside assistance was included with the Nissan Leaf. I'm pretty sure I've seen this in multiple places (though I cannot find it on their website now that I'm looking for it). Another forum lists "No Charge For 36 Months - Roadside Assistance" as included.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Nice! This kind of stuff just continues to show that Nissan (unlike some other manufacturers I can name) is "all in" when it comes to EVs!
      • 4 Years Ago
      Last March Nissan announced that the purchase price of the LEAF in the US included free roadside assistance for 3 years :

      "...The Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price *(MSRP) for the 2011 all-electric, zero-emission Nissan LEAF is $32,780, which includes three years of roadside assistance... "

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