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Nissan has announced that it is going to offer a bit more security to Leaf owners than soothing words and lemon buybacks when it comes to degrading battery capacity. In a note published on My Nissan Leaf (and available below), Andy Palmer, Nissan's executive vice president, writes about a new enhancement to the "warranty coverage of the battery system that powers the Nissan Leaf."

In short, if your Leaf is losing battery capacity – here defined as dropping lower than nine bars in the first five years or 60,000 miles – Nissan will "repair or replace the battery under warranty with a new or remanufactured battery to restore capacity at or above a minimum of nine bars." Nissan says it is now, "the first and only manufacturer in the automotive industry to provide limited warranty coverage for battery capacity loss for electric vehicles," but it doesn't address that the "bars," as visible on the dashboard, are not exactly scientific measurements and are controlled by the onboard computer.

Nine bars, out of the maximum 12, would be "approximately 70 percent of [the Leaf's] original battery capacity." Before the Leaf launched, Nissan said it expected Leafs to have between 70 and 80 percent of its original capacity after then years. Information on a more reliable battery gauge will be coming at some point next year. There is much more detailed information below, including things like non-warranty replacement batteries and why the policy won't go into effect until spring 2013.

Palmer made clear that he is only talking about US Leafs – all of them, from model year 2011 and 2012 on up to the upcoming 2013 Leafs – but that a worldwide plan will "apply and be specifically communicated to each owner worldwide in the coming months in accordance with applicable law." He says that, "Nissan is fully committed to the long-term viability of electric vehicles and we will continue to demonstrate that with action," and new plans like this warranty should go a long way to making that happen.
Show full PR text
Special announcement regarding the Nissan LEAF from Andy Palmer, executive vice president, Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.

Good morning and Happy Holidays to all our Nissan LEAF owners in the U.S. and abroad.

As we approach the close of 2012, I wanted to provide an update on a subject that has interested a number of Nissan LEAF drivers in the U.S. desert southwest and select other markets. I'm speaking, of course, about concerns regarding the rate of battery capacity loss in the Nissan LEAF's Lithium-ion battery.

My comments today will be specific to Nissan LEAFs in the U.S., but the actions I will explain will apply and be specifically communicated to each owner worldwide in the coming months in accordance with applicable law.

Throughout the latter half of this year, our technical teams have worked diligently to ensure that the batteries installed in Nissan LEAFs were operating to specification. As we've gone through this process, we have listened to your concerns, and have communicated with you in various ways, including through the MyNissanLEAF owners' forum and other third parties.

Nissan has been taking your concerns very seriously, yet we know that some of you have not been satisfied with the pace of our support activities. Since launch, the Nissan LEAF has garnered some of the highest customer advocacy of any vehicle in the Nissan lineup, so we understand the importance of maintaining and growing that advocacy. And the only way to do that is by earning a high level of customer trust in our product and our support of it.

Simply put, we want to take actions which will further improve our customers' satisfaction with their Nissan LEAFs while demonstrating industry-leading confidence in the integrity of our battery system. Nissan is fully committed to the long-term viability of electric vehicles and we will continue to demonstrate that with action.

So today, we are announcing that we are enhancing the warranty coverage of the battery system that powers the Nissan LEAF electric vehicle. With this action, Nissan becomes the first and only manufacturer in the automotive industry to provide limited warranty coverage for battery capacity loss for electric vehicles.

Under an expanded New Electric Vehicle Limited Warranty, Nissan will protect against capacity loss in LEAF batteries that fall below nine bars, of the available 12 bars displayed on the vehicle's battery capacity gauge, for the first five years or 60,000 miles in the United States, whichever comes first. For LEAF vehicles whose batteries have fallen below nine bars during this period, Nissan will repair or replace the battery under warranty with a new or remanufactured battery to restore capacity at or above a minimum of nine bars.

A vehicle whose battery has nine remaining bars indicated on the gauge is retaining approximately 70 percent of its original battery capacity. This new limited warranty coverage remains subject to the other terms, conditions and exclusions of the Nissan New Electric Vehicle Limited Warranty, which otherwise remain unchanged.

As previously mentioned, we are also looking at opportunities to improve the precision of the battery capacity gauge that displays remaining capacity in the LEAFs electric vehicle battery, and intend to have more to report on this topic in the New Year.

The specifics of this new limited warranty coverage will be communicated to each owner in a dedicated communication early next year. The expanded warranty coverage will apply in the United States to the upcoming Model Year 2013 Nissan LEAF upon its release. Importantly, Nissan will provide this expanded coverage to all model year 2011 and 2012 Nissan LEAFs sold and distributed by Nissan in the United States to date, effective upon a date to be announced but which is anticipated to be in the Spring of 2013.

Our actions today are intended to put customer minds at ease regarding the topic of battery capacity loss. Even though it is expected the great majority of owners will never have to use this enhanced warranty, we want each Nissan LEAF owner to have the security that should capacity loss exceed this defined threshold, Nissan will cover the repair or replacement of their battery under warranty.

I'm certain that there will be questions regarding the specifics of what we've announced here today. The attached 'Q&A' is intended to address some of those, although our dialogue on this subject will not end here. We intend to continue communicating with LEAF owners and we hope to add more information early in the New Year.

Also, many of you may have heard about or already read a recent LEAF customer survey that Plug-In America (PIA) administered. The survey, available here, is a valuable read for any LEAF owner concerned about the performance of their electric vehicle battery. I would encourage every LEAF owner to digest PIA's data, which came from over 240 vehicles, with contributions from over 25 states, two Canadian provinces, and the UK, representing over 3 million miles driven.

Finally, in early January, we will also announce the details of the new, model year 2013 Nissan LEAF for the U.S. As many of you know, this vehicle – and the batteries that power it – will be built right here in the United States at our plant in Smyrna, Tennessee. There are exciting changes coming with the 2013 Nissan LEAF, and we can't wait to tell you about them very soon.

In the meantime, Happy New Year to each of you, and thank you again for your advocacy and support of the electric vehicle movement.

Best Regards,

Andy Palmer
Executive Vice President – Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.

Expanded New Electric Vehicle Limited Warranty 'Question & Answer'

Q. What does the LEAF's Expanded "Nissan New Electric Vehicle Limited Warranty" actually cover?
A. In addition to the coverage provided under the existing Nissan New Electric Vehicle Limited Warranty, this expanded warranty applicable to LEAF vehicles in the United States will protect against capacity loss in LEAF batteries that falls below nine bars, of the available 12 bars displayed on the vehicle's battery capacity gauge, for the first 5 years or 60,000 miles, whichever comes first. For LEAF vehicles whose batteries have fallen below nine bars during this period, Nissan will repair or replace the battery under warranty with a new or remanufactured battery to restore capacity at or above a minimum of nine bars. A vehicle whose battery has nine remaining bars indicated on the gauge is retaining approximately 70 percent of its original battery capacity, although remember that the rate of capacity loss is non-linear and decreases over time.

Q. What vehicles are covered by this new limited warranty coverage? Will this warranty be retroactive for existing owners?
A. The expanded warranty coverage will apply in the United States to the upcoming Model Year 2013 Nissan LEAF upon its release. Importantly, Nissan will provide this expanded coverage to all model year 2011 and 2012 Nissan LEAFs sold and distributed by Nissan in the United States to date, effective upon a date to be announced but which is anticipated to be in the Spring of 2013. This new limited warranty coverage remains subject to the other terms, conditions and exclusions of the Nissan New Electric Vehicle Limited Warranty, which otherwise remain unchanged.

Q. Does the warranty cover replacement or refurbishment?
A. This warranty covers any repairs needed to return battery capacity to a level of nine remaining bars on the vehicle's battery capacity level gauge. If possible, the Lithium-Ion battery components will be repaired or replaced, and the original Lithium-Ion battery will be returned to the vehicle. If necessary, the Lithium-Ion battery will be replaced with either a new or remanufactured Lithium-Ion battery. Any repair or replacement made under this Lithium-Ion Battery Capacity Coverage may not return a Lithium-Ion battery to an "as new" condition with all 12 battery capacity bars, but it will provide the vehicle with a capacity level of nine bars or more on the battery capacity level gauge.

Q. Why doesn't the warranty restore the battery to the same level as a brand new one?
A. Gradual capacity loss is normal and expected in all lithium-ion batteries with time and use. The intent of this warranty is to provide consumers with confidence that despite this normal battery capacity loss, they will be assured of a minimum level of capacity throughout the warranty period.

Q. Is there an option for an owner to replace the battery? Is there a price for replacement?
A. Nissan is confident this new warranty will ensure customer satisfaction, but we also plan to release battery replacement pricing for those customers who wish to replace their batteries once they are no longer eligible for the warranty. Further details will be announced at a later timing in spring of 2013.

Q. What is the cost of the replacement battery?
A. We will announce further details before implementation.

Q. When does this new warranty coverage go into effect?
A. This expanded warranty will apply to Model Year 2013 LEAFs upon their release for sale by United States Nissan dealers. The date on which this new warranty coverage becomes effective for Model Year 2011 and 2012 Nissan LEAF vehicles will be announced in the future, effective upon a date to be announced but which is anticipated to be in the Spring of 2013, to allow for proper implementation by Nissan and its network of certified LEAF dealers.

Q. Why did you decide to enhance the warranty policy and implement this program now?
A. The expanded warranty is intended to put customers' minds at ease concerning battery capacity loss, although it is expected that the great majority of LEAF owners will not have to use this enhanced warranty. Nissan's decision is to demonstrate its confidence in the integrity and performance of its battery system.

Q. What is the status of the class-action lawsuit against Nissan related to battery capacity issues?
A. The lawsuit has been settled as part of our effort to address customer concerns including those expressed by the two customers who filed the class-action lawsuit.

Q. What are the other countries where this warranty policy will apply?
A. Further details will be announced in spring of 2013, but in addition to the United States we do plan to include other global markets such as Japan and Europe.

Q. Why are you waiting until spring of 2013 for implementation of this warranty as it applies to Model Year 2011 and 2012 vehicles?
A. Providing prompt and effective warranty service requires proper planning and preparation by our parts and service division working closely with our network of certified LEAF dealers.

Q. What should customers do if the gauge falls below 9 bars?
A. Customers who believe that their vehicle battery may need repair or replacement should visit their nearest certified Nissan LEAF dealer. Additional details on the warranty and repair process will be provided in spring 2013.

Q. How does the frequency of fast charging affect the rate of capacity loss? Are there other factors that influence the rate of capacity loss?
A. Quick charging the vehicle more than one time a day will affect and may hasten the rate of battery capacity loss. Other factors that will affect and may hasten the rate of capacity loss include, but are not limited to: (1) Sustained high battery temperatures (caused, for example, by exposure to very high ambient temperatures or extending highway driving with multiple quick charges); (2) Sustained high battery state of charge (caused, for example, by frequently charging to 100% state of charge and/or leaving the battery above 80% state of charge for long periods of time); and (3) Higher than estimated annual mileage accumulation (such as more than 12,500 miles per year).


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 93 Comments
      hahiran
      • 2 Years Ago
      It's a bit of a joke warranty. If you live in A cooler climate, then this warranty might as well promise a million dollars since there is a 0% chance of this happening, and if it did you would already be covered since your battery would have a physical defect. If you live in Phoenix, they can always claim that you have somehow abused the battery, and they are only warrantying the battery to boost it back to 9 bars, meaning around 55 miles of range. Worthless, absolutely worthless. A cynical, well-planned PR scheme.
        Joeviocoe
        • 2 Years Ago
        @hahiran
        That is the whole point of the warranty. Peace of mind. While people (here and elsewhere) are shouting "Lemon, Lemon", "this car is the worst car ever", "the Leaf will eat your babies", etc... this warranty will quell some of the concerns. Improper Extrapolation is the problem that some people have. They see a small minority of people in hot climates, and start shouting that the Leaf will be dead in the water in a few short years... and be worthless soon. DaveMart in particular has started clinging on to every phrase that might indicate a future Leaf-Apocolypse. He actually thought Nissan would never offer replacement battery packs. He thought that every Leaf, in every climate would soon see battery degradation well beyond acceptable. Living in Phoenix does not void the warranty. It is an explanation that the pack may degrade faster there... but the same warranty applies to Phoenix Leafs if they fall below the stated threshold.
      ATC blog Afganistan
      • 2 Years Ago
      Here's some perspective: For every car tested in Phoenix in September 2012 (links below), only one met the prima facia threshold for warranty repair (having 8 of 12 capapcity bars). The official battery capacity value, per the Nissan service manual for LEAF is as follows. It's important to note that Nissan removed all reference to this data in the April 2011 update of the service manual. 12 of 12 bars - 100% to 85% 11 of 12 bars - 84.99% to 78.75% 10 of 12 bars - 78.74% to 72.50% 9 of 12 bars - 72.49% to 66.25% 8 of 12 bars - 60% to 66.24% But, would that car actually get a 9 or better capacity bar battery under warranty, or would one of the several additional qualifiers (high heat, high mileage, etc) mean that no Phoenix car will ever get warranty? From the Q&A attachment concerning the new warranty and battery capacity loss: (1) Sustained high battery temperatures (caused, for example, by exposure to very high ambient temperatures or extending highway driving with multiple quick charges); (2) Sustained high battery state of charge (caused, for example, by frequently charging to 100% state of charge and/or leaving the battery above 80% state of charge for long periods of time); and (3) Higher than estimated annual mileage accumulation (such as more than 12,500 miles per year) The actual number of cars that will be repaired under this new LEAF capacity warranty (with a used battery that can hold a capacity of 66.25% or better will be VERY small and likely quite inexpensive for Nissan. Plus, they no longer need to buy back cars as they are currently doing, since they now will have a warranty. Win, win for Nissan. http://www.mynissanleaf.com/viewtopic.php?p=228326#p22832 http://insideevs.com/all-the-results-from-the-largest-independent-test-of-nissan-leafs-with-lost-capacity-not-instrument-failure/
        DaveMart
        • 2 Years Ago
        @ATC blog Afganistan
        So you are only supposed to charge to 80% most of the time. That knocks the normal range down to 58 miles when the car is new. They are jolly jokers at Nissan.
        DaveMart
        • 2 Years Ago
        @ATC blog Afganistan
        Nissan continue to take the mick out of their customers, whilst apologists on this forum go on about what a marvellous job they have done and that we shouldn't actually expect to be able to travel further in a car than on a bicycle.
          Joeviocoe
          • 2 Years Ago
          @DaveMart
          "whilst apologists on this forum go on about what a marvellous job they have done" Nobody is trying to label Nissan as marvelous. But a recognition that waiting for the perfect EV was part of the problem. Your insistence that you could have designed a superior EV, at an affordable cost is a bit arrogant. The Leaf is a "good enough" car for tens of thousands of people. Just because you won't own one... doesn't give you the right to project your subjective desires for an EV onto them.
          EVSUPERHERO
          • 2 Years Ago
          @DaveMart
          Your a hard man David Martin. Since they give no volage readings or AH's in or out of the battery, could it be there insturmentation is frying in the hot Arizona sun and not the batteries? Turtles and bars don't mean a damn thing, especialy if they are malfunctioning from heat. Would be nice if Nissan let us know if it is the battery or insturmentation that is frying.
          SVX pearlie
          • 2 Years Ago
          @DaveMart
          The bulk of those Leaf owners are new enough that they won't have experienced battery degradation. In a couple years, as they hit 2 (or more) summers, we'll see if your incessant cheerleading and whitewashing is true. If you look at losses based on the age of cars, it's not a good sign.
          Joeviocoe
          • 2 Years Ago
          @DaveMart
          You can comment any way you wish. But you cannot speak for the tens of thousands of Leaf owners you LOVE their cars. All I said was that, no matter what your opinion is, it is YOURS ALONE, and just because you hate it, doesn't mean you that any Leaf buyer is a sucker.. as you put it. Projected sales are usually over estimated for many reasons. Like it or not, the Leaf succeeded... despite mediocre design.
          DaveMart
          • 2 Years Ago
          @DaveMart
          EV: The fact is that Nissan should never have sold a battery pack like this in the heat of Arizona. The durability of the pack even in more temperate climates is worse than any other electric/plug in car that I am aware of, although some here take exception to my consequently calling it poor, and in hot climates it is risible.
          DaveMart
          • 2 Years Ago
          @DaveMart
          I am perfectly entitled to comment in any way I choose. You are not the arbiter so the arrogance is yours in assuming the right to determine who can say what. I would also point out that my criticism is specific to the Nissan design, not to several others out there. People are in fact voting with their wallets with the large shortfall from projected sales. I support EVs but I do not support people being gulled into purchasing an inadequately designed product. That is my opinion of the Leaf. Deal with it.
      DaveMart
      • 2 Years Ago
      This is of course an improvement. The warranty is presumably for real miles as measured on the car, and not some fanciful construct based on LA4 So, for an owner the range of 73 miles (EPA0 is guaranteed to be 70% after 5 years or 60,000 miles. That is 51 miles. Then you have to factor in that Nissan say that the battery should not normally be charged to more than 80%. That leaves you around 41 miles to play with under normal circumstances. The fan boys will of course promptly go on about the average miles driven being around 30 miles a day. Like all averages, you would sometimes need to do more, sometimes less. Not a lot of margin, is there? That is before considering that in very cold weather you are not going to do as 'well' The 2013 model Leaf is likely to have a slightly greater range, which will help, but not enormously. In my view the problem remains that Nissan have chosen a poor battery chemistry, unsupported by active cooling, and so the product is inadequately engineered, and that is not just for Arizona. They claim that this is the first battery capacity warranty. They have on some pretty skewed spectacles to make that claim. It appears that they have simply ignored the Volt as not being a pure electric vehicle, although it would appear that by the end of the warranty the Volt is likely to have a comparable all electric range to that of the Leaf left, without considering the ICE being used. And here is Smart, warranting when you lease the battery: 'Smart expects most of its customers to choose the rental arrangement, as it comes with the added benefit of a 10-year guarantee. This means the firm will guarantee the lithium-ion battery pack will maintain 80 per cent of its performance for at least 10 years.' http://www.autoexpress.co.uk/smart/fortwo/35680/smart-fortwo-ev-details#ixzz2GLFD2BI8 Since when you buy you get exactly the same battery pack as the leased version, it seems that buyers will reasonably be able to expect to go around 1.6 times the miles, up to 100,000, and still have 80% capacity as opposed to 70% Good luck on getting a good price for a Leaf after 5 years. Again, we will be told that Leaf buyers are happy to do invariably low daily mileage in their cars, are never going to sell and so on. The fact is that Elon Musk, who is getting sales, said a long time ago that the uncooled battery pack in the Leaf was not going to do the job, and a number of other companies have successfully produced electric vehicles without the battery issues. No doubt the next line of response will be that we all have some sort of duty to cheer Nissan, as they were seminal in introducing electric vehicles. That kind of quasi-religious approach, selecting the elect of God and dismissing the unbelievers cuts no ice with me. If an idea is not properly implemented it looses merit. In the absence of effective arguments no doubt this post will simply be downrated, on the grounds that reality is a bit painful. Its a lemon.
        Joeviocoe
        • 2 Years Ago
        @DaveMart
        "They claim that this is the first battery capacity warranty." -ABG is at fault there. No surprise, a misleading headline. "Good luck on getting a good price for a Leaf after 5 years." -The battery capacity will affect resale value to be sure. But gasoline prices and the cost of a replacement pack (with a 70% cap core return).... will be bigger factors. You cannot make that assumption just yet. "Again, we will be told that Leaf buyers are happy to do invariably low daily mileage in their cars, are never going to sell and so on" -Strawman argument. "never going to sell"? Who said that? "No doubt the next line of response will be that we all have some sort of duty to cheer Nissan" -Not a "duty", as you put it. But a recognition that waiting for the perfect EV was part of the problem. Your insistence that you could design a superior EV, at an affordable cost is a bit arrogant. "quasi-religious approach, selecting the elect of God and dismissing the unbelievers cuts" -I see no such loyalty to Nissan here. That is all in your mind, like the "War on Christmas". You seem to want nothing more than a holy crusade. In fact, your emotional hatred and vitriol for the Leaf even trumps the fanboy's love for it. So if your argument is fair, then it is also fair to say your negative reaction to a car you don't even own... is as equally "quasi-religious". -The Leaf is a mediocre EV. Not great, but not the "Lemon" you proport it to be. There are hundreds of mediocre cars that are considered successful. Arguments are good, but let's keep moderation please.
        chanonissan
        • 2 Years Ago
        @DaveMart
        Davemart I am not too sure that all the other ev with tmp have not have a problem, they were never driving by independent people to really give a true review in a hot climate, leaf problem was only in arizona hot temperature, so to just make a claim that the leaf battery have some degrading problem in every state is incorrect, I would like to have a test run with all the other evs to really do a true comparison in arizona.
          Joeviocoe
          • 2 Years Ago
          @chanonissan
          "but the heavy degradation expected in milder climates." "There's that word again. "Heavy." Why are things so heavy in the future? Is there a problem with the Earth's gravitational pull? " It is NOT "heavy". It is moderate, expected, and accepted by every Nissan Leaf buyer. Just because you want a battery to be engineered your way, doesn't mean that any other way is unacceptable.
          DaveMart
          • 2 Years Ago
          @chanonissan
          Nowhere did I claim that no other EV will have a problem. The iMiEV for instance might well do, as it uses a similar chemistry and has limited extra cooling compared to the Leaf. The list of electric cars which are unlikely to includes the Smart, Volt, Coda and the Fit. My critique is not based on the absurd battery degradation in Arizona, for which there is really no excuse, but the heavy degradation expected in milder climates. If you think having a range of 51 miles after 60,000 miles is fine, go ahead, buy two and fill your boots.
          Joeviocoe
          • 2 Years Ago
          @chanonissan
          Easy to call the Leaf the "worst" with such a small sampling of EVs to choose from. PHEVs like the Volt can naturally overpack their batteries since they have a RE. You're grasping at straws here.
          DaveMart
          • 2 Years Ago
          @chanonissan
          @Joe: It is heavy compared to every other battery chemistry out there, and heavy compared to one having a cooling system. Clearly if reliability of cars is compared, for instance, unreliable is defined as those cars at the bottom of the list. In just the same way Leaf car batteries suffer from heavy degradation compared to all the others. Either you wish to stop using language in any meaningful way, or you should produce a list of those that degrade faster than that of the Leaf. I can't think of any, with only the iMiEV possibly running them close.
          chanonissan
          • 2 Years Ago
          @chanonissan
          You may not say so but the fact you publish the comment means you are in agreement. "The fact is that Elon Musk, who is getting sales, said a long time ago that the uncooled battery pack in the Leaf was not going to do the job, and a number of other companies have successfully produced electric vehicles without the battery issues."
          chanonissan
          • 2 Years Ago
          @chanonissan
          In fact the the leaf battery is doing the job, and it is reveal less than 1% leaf batteries degraded, but not doing well in extreme hot temperatures. www.tinyurl.com/Leaf-BadBatteryMap
        Electron
        • 2 Years Ago
        @DaveMart
        Bit of a sermon but: amen!
      Joeviocoe
      • 2 Years Ago
      Thanks to Chelsea Sexton and Tony Williams (and all the participants of the Leaf tests) for their hard work, patience and diligence.
      • 2 Years Ago
      "its original capacity after then years." ten*. Feel free to delete comment after correction.
      SVX pearlie
      • 2 Years Ago
      ICE doesn't constantly and irreversibly degrade like an EV. You need to change the oil a few times over the first 5 years, but it'll still make essentially constant hp / torque / mileage / range over that duration.
      beanjapan
      • 2 Years Ago
      Think the tittle is wrong here. The Volt has had capacity loss in their warranty booklet since the car launched.
        JakeY
        • 2 Years Ago
        @beanjapan
        The Volt warranty never had a hard guarantee. It gave a general window for estimated degradation (10-30%) and in the end it's up to the technician's discretion to refurbish or replace the pack (the limit is never explicitly laid out). "Depending on use, the battery may degrade as little as 10% to as much as 30% of capacity over the warranty period. A dealer service technician will determine if the battery energy capacity (kWh storage) is within the proper limit, given the age and mileage of the vehicle." Nissan's warranty outright has a specific guarantee (not up to the discretion of anyone).
        noevfud
        • 2 Years Ago
        @beanjapan
        The Volt is not a pure EV. The Volt battery is part of the emission control system and must be warrantied. The Volt pack has extra "unused" capacity that is in reserve that is used to keep the capacity at the required levels to meet the requirements.
          beanjapan
          • 2 Years Ago
          @noevfud
          I agree with rotation, it just says battery capacity loss, not EV only. Regardless to how you see the volt, it is an EV to many people and although a backup plan is always onboard, the reason you may be buying the car, is because you can go gas free for most of your daily commutes. If all of a sudden you couldn't do that anymore, I imagine people would be pissed (maybe not equally as pissed as an EV owner, as a volt owner can always carry on with fuel)
          Rotation
          • 2 Years Ago
          @noevfud
          The title doesn't say EVs only. It says first to cover capacity loss.
      Marcopolo
      • 2 Years Ago
      Sigh, what happened to all those ardent Nissan Leaf fans of only two years ago ? So Nissan's Leaf hasn't proved the paragon of automotive excellence that saved the planet and made ICE vehicles obsolete within the decade ! That was never going to happen. Only the terminally rabid ever thought so, along with the cranks and WKTEC crowd. The little Leaf was conceived and produced at the height of environmental and alternate fuel enthusiasm. It was ( still is) a very good little EV built to satisfy a market sector of commuter motorists that sadly don't exist in any real numbers. But the Nissan Leaf has sold over 43,000 vehicles world wide,proving the potential of EV technology without some form of hybrid assistance. So what if it's not perfect ! But it's not that bad either ! Judging the pioneering Nissan Leaf by the same consumer expectations as a modern ICE with over 100 years of sophistication and development, is unfair. The Leaf deserves to be judged in the context of consumer expectations for radically new auto-mobiles of the past. In that context, the Nissan performs very well. To a certain extent, customer expectations have become too exacting. Every purchase on new technology contains and element of risk. Too much consumer protection, hinders innovation. Leaf looks ugly ? Well maybe to some, but then the 1934, Chrysler Airflow nearly sank Chrysler. and had to be redesigned to become acceptable. Yet today, the Airflows contemporaries look woefully old fashioned in comparison. Sales of the little 1959 Austin A40 Farina Countryman, also didn't set the automotive world on fire, but it's 'two box ' design was the forerunner of the hatchback design still dominating small car design over 40 years later. Joeviocoe's loyal defence of Nissan's small pioneer, deserves more respect than derision. It's very easy for armchair expert to advocate improvements after a vehicle's release, but it took great courage and vision by Carlos Ghosn and Nissan to build the Leaf. The opinions of "Johnny come lately's", boasting how they could have done better, are valueless. Hopefully, Nissan will continue to improve it's EV technology, and it should be remembered that out of nearly 45,000 Leaf owners, only a handful of owners are complaining. The media, and lawyers motivated by malice and avarice, have blown the Nissan battery pack issue out of proportion, to the delight of those who enjoy the prospect of gloating at any misfortune, no matter how minor. I have always held the view that the market for low range, slow charging, small EV's is very limited. (however, it gives me no pleasure to be proved correct). Somebody has to be the pioneer ! Carlos Ghosn stepped up and accepted the challenge. The Leaf is a very good first model. Carlos Ghosn deserves respect and encouragement, not abuse.
        JakeY
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Marcopolo
        The Leaf is the best selling plug-in, period. That shows that the issue (if there is one) is not necessarily the car itself, but likely the overall market for plug-ins. "So Nissan's Leaf hasn't proved the paragon of automotive excellence that saved the planet and made ICE vehicles obsolete within the decade !" I like how you use so much hyperbole to describe what initial enthusiasm. No one claimed that will happen. Look at the Prius, it's well over a decade it has not make standard ICE vehicles obsolete. No one would expect that to happen so quickly with EVs either. What the initial enthusiasm was that the Leaf's pricing is low enough to "change the game", which is to get EVs out of the rut of only selling/leasing about a 1000 a year worldwide at the max (being an extremely niche vehicle). I think it has certainly done that. I have seen a couple of Leafs in the wild and I can't say the same for any other EV before it. It'll take a while before it reaches the Prius level of popularity. And I think it's a bit premature to write it off after only about 2 years of sales. It's still a long way before the end of the decade.
          JakeY
          • 2 Years Ago
          @JakeY
          @Marcopolo Well. the argument used in the first half just popped up at me because it's common in "fanboy" arguments: "Where's all the (*insert product here*) fans?" "They said: (*insert extremely exaggerated version here*)" And yes, you throw a few bones to the Leaf in the middle part, but your concluding point is saying you are proven "right" that the market for EVs like the Leaf is extremely limited. To me the comment in whole reads like that you are writing the Leaf off as a vehicle (it was a good first try, but it's basically not going to be a success). I'm arguing it's a bit early to tell as things are just getting started.
          Marcopolo
          • 2 Years Ago
          @JakeY
          @ JakeY "So Nissan's Leaf hasn't proved the paragon of automotive excellence that saved the planet and made ICE vehicles obsolete within the decade !" Why do you choose to take issue with only half of the paragraph ? The full paragraph provided the context ! I believe my defence of Nissan's Leaf as a courageous pioneer is valid. But your attempt to portray the Leaf as a commercial success is unrealistic. The success of the Prius, can't be used as a marketing model for the Leaf. As I replied to lne937s, the real test will be the Renault ZOE. I don't believe that a large enough market exists in the US for short range EV's.
        lne937s
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Marcopolo
        If people judge the LEAF versus being the perfect vehicle for every situation, then they will find some circumstances where it will not live up to expectations. Maybe the LEAF isn't ideal for every possible climate. In Phoenix, where they saw the most evidence of battery degradation, the Average summer temperature is almost 105F or 40C. For comparison, Sydney has an average high temp in the summer of 26C or 79 F, Melbourne is slightly cooler. No bars were lost in the battery survey in locations with average summer temperatures of Australia's major cities, even with cars reaching 60k miles. If you want to try to cross the outback, then the LEAF is not the ideal vehicle. If you plan to use it in Australia's major cities, you are fine. Likewise, if you live in Japan, most of the US, the EU, major cities in China, etc., the temperatures are not even close to getting hot enough to compare to the places where there is evidence of heat-related battery degredation. And the LEAF is still globally the best selling electric car of all time. It outsells GM's miniscule Volt (smaller inside than the LEAF). And the LEAF is comming out with an improved version for 2013 model year, with lower price and more range. The Japanese model showed a 14% increase in range in a test cycle that doesn't account for climate control. Our test cycle will likely show an even higher increase due to the increased efficiency of the heat pump. Nissan will also be able to reduce its costs due to getting around yen conversion and they have a major production capacity increase to improve scale. The 2013 LEAF car has yet to come out in the US, so everyone writing it off is being premature. Meanwhile, the Volt is getting more competition from other plug-in hybrids that have more useable interiors and much better fuel economy running on gasoline (even if their electric range is shorter). So everybody who gets excited about that car based on a few months of sales is also being premature.
          Laurence
          • 2 Years Ago
          @lne937s
          You sure have taken a liking to the word "disingenuous". However, I used average summer high temperature to compare to average summer high temperature, which is what was measured in the PIA survey. If you want to use it as reference, then that is how you have to use it. Phoenix can get over 120F. It is "disingenuous" to use other peak temperature stats in comparison to average Phoenix summer temperature. I used the largest cities in Australia, because that is where you live. Perth has a monthly peak temperature of 90F, Brisbane is 84F, Adelaide 83F... Meanwhile Phoenix has an average high temp in July of 107F... So NO, none of those cities you site are anywhere near as hot on average... your assertion is "disingenuous" http://www.worldweatheronline.com/Phoenix-weather-averages/Arizona/US.aspx http://www.worldweatheronline.com/Perth-weather-averages/Western-Australia/AU.aspx http://www.worldweatheronline.com/Adelaide-weather-averages/South-Australia/AU.aspx http://www.worldweatheronline.com/Brisbane-weather-averages/Queensland/AU.aspx In terms of the Volt, I used it for comparison, because this small vehicle is most commonly used for comparison. The LEAF has limited competition in cost-effective, mass-market true EV's, so it is likely to dominate the EV market for the near future. The Volt, on the other hand has significant plug-in hybrid competition being introduced. And I never said that the LEAF sales have not lived up to Nissan's sales growth hopes to date. I just said that it is early in the game, updates are on the immediate horizon, and you shouldn't write them off yet.
          Marcopolo
          • 2 Years Ago
          @lne937s
          @ lne937s What a curious response ! Why do you find it necessary to disparage GM's Volt, in order to justify the Nissan Leaf ? I don't know why you have find it necessary to invent a rivalry between the two vehicles. You are doing Nissan no favours by arguing such distorted opinions. Nissan is disappointed with the sales of Leaf outside Japan, that's just a fact ! Likewise, your reference to Australia is disingenuous. There are less than 18 Nissan Leaf vehicles registered in the whole of Australia, so no realistic assessment is possible ! Quoting 'average' temperatures for Sydney and Melbourne is disingenuous, both cities experience periods of over 114 degrees F (45.6c), for six months of the year. In addition, Sydney is a city built on substantial gradients with heavy traffic for long distances at temperatures over 114F , conditions are not unlike Arizona. Other major Australian cities, Brisbane, Perth and especially Adelaide, climate conditions are very similar to Arizona. I hope Nissan do improve the Leaf, but the market for small, low range, EV commutator vehicles will remain limited. Volume production of such a vehicle requires production runs in the hundreds of thousands per year to justify it's viability. The short range prohibits sales of that nature. No matter how many times you tell people that they don't need to travel more distance, they will just nod politely, and buy a different vehicle. I always hoped to be proved wrong, but the real test will not be the Leaf, but it's French sibling, the ZOE. The Zoe will be released into the most sympathetic commuter car market in the world. If it fails, it's evidence that for a time, EV's must have some 'range extended' capacity to be commercially viable. The advantage of the Volt, (and all EREVs) is the public can quickly understand it's just the same as a 'real' car, but better !
          George Betak
          • 2 Years Ago
          @lne937s
          lne937s a.k.a Lawrence, once you have decided that it's time to let reason rule over emotion, please have a look at the following two links. Unless of course you wanted to continue to rant, in which case be my guest. http://jcwinnie.biz/wordpress/?p=890 http://gm-volt.com/forum/showthread.php?17553-MNL-chart-Relative-Battery-Aging-Factor
          Marco Polo
          • 2 Years Ago
          @lne937s
          @ lne937s a.k.a Lawrence" Again, both your alter ego's, deliberately miss the point. All the mainland Australian State Capital cities have successions of days where the temperature reaches 114 degrees F. The fact that these 3-5 day periods are followed by sharp drops in temperature for the next few days, thus lowering the 'average month temperature' (this is common in coastal cities) , is immaterial. Equally relevant is the fact that of the 71 Leaf registered in the whole of Australia, only 18 are in private ownership. (This situation has not improved greatly with Nissan discounting the Leaf by $A 8,000 , and offering interest free finance. ) No real indications can be drawn from such a small sample. (The Australian Government offers no incentives for EV's)
          George Betak
          • 2 Years Ago
          @lne937s
          Guys, this is completely unnecessary. We had all this arguments at great length on MNL. Please have a look at the battery again model several of us collaborated on below. It's fairly good, and so far it's been a good approximation for the field data that come in. http://bit.ly/leafagingmodel There is a relative aging table in there as well, which is based on Arrhenius Law, and several years worth of meteorological data for each referenced location. Sydney ranks about as high as Anaheim in terms of climatic impact, and based on the experience of US LEAF owners there, capacity bar loss within the first two years of ownership is within the realm of possibilities. A lot will depend on the usage pattern, the local micro-climate and on solar-loading. Conversely, Melbourne ranks somewhere between San Jose and San Francisco, which is a bit cooler. We only had one bar loss report there. I suggested that ZIP codes were tracked in the PIA study, which Tom graciously accepted. It was his decision to express the local climate the way he did, I had no input on that, it's a good proxy, but it does not capture climatic impact fully. Many believe that Arrhenius Law will give us better accuracy in this regard, but this requires some effort in terms of data collection and post-processing. You can benefit from our collective efforts in this regard. I hope this helps.
          Marcopolo
          • 2 Years Ago
          @lne937s
          @ @ lne937s a.k.a Lawrence" What a scientifically sound 'survey' you must have conducted ! Why not include places with no Leaf's at all ? In that way you can really reduce the averages ! If you had read my original post properly, you would discover that I had actually discounted battery failure as a reason for the Leaf's lack of sales success outside Japan. The real problem is range limitations, coupled with the fact that a large percentage of the buyer demographic for hatchbacks, are apartment dwellers. Why is it so hard to accept that a combination of range limitation, and charging facilities, will limit sales opportunities. It's no good inventing all sorts of other reasons, simply because ESD technology has not advanced sufficiently to solve the drawbacks at an acceptable price.
          lne937s
          • 2 Years Ago
          @lne937s
          Marco, What you fail to comprehend is that the only evidence of heat-related battery degredadation is in places where it not just gets hot from time to time, but gets very hot for months at a time. There are places throughout the US that get hot for short periods of time, but no evidence of significant heat related battery degredation there. So your assertion is not valid. The only places that have seen heat-related battery degredation are places that get reallly hot and stay hot for months at a time (not days at a time). Your mentioning of how many have been sold in Australia is immaterial. The fact of the matter is that no evidence of heat-related battery degradation has been seen anywhere with a climate similar to Australia's major cities, to the major cities of China, in the EU, Japan, etc., so anyone living there has no reason to be concerned.
      Joeviocoe
      • 2 Years Ago
      Improper Extrapolation is the problem that some people have. They see a small minority of people in hot climates, and start shouting that the Leaf will be dead in the water in a few short years... and be worthless soon. DaveMart in particular has started clinging on to every phrase that might indicate a future Leaf-Apocalypse. He actually thought Nissan would never offer replacement battery packs. He thought that every Leaf, in every climate would soon see battery degradation well beyond acceptable. The survey done by PlugInAmerica is a good indication that the problem exists, but that it is also overblown by many here on ABG and on MNL.
        DaveMart
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Joeviocoe
        Improper extrapolation is indeed the problem. It is not me who was claiming that because only a few cases had so far come to light the problem is necessarily tiny, but you. It is perfectly clear that the cooling system is inadequate in any hot climate. That is a systemic issue, not one confined to 1% of owners as you quite improperly claim. Since a large proportion of Leaf cars have been sold in souther California then the potential issue is very large. It is also quite clear that the manganese spinel chemistry they have used has a far lower cycle life anyway than any other that is generally used for cars. Your engineering courses seem to have been light on statistics. My accounting courses covered it just fine, and if at any of the companies I worked at this sort of issue occurred in a product which had only been on the market for a couple of years, the alarm bells would be ringing very loudly.
          Joeviocoe
          • 2 Years Ago
          @DaveMart
          "It is perfectly clear that the cooling system is inadequate in any hot climate. That is a systemic issue, not one confined to 1% of owners as you quite improperly claim." What? Your first paragraph points the blame at me... yet your second does the Exact thing you are accusing me of doing. YOU are extrapolating past the anecdotal confirmation of 0.63% -------------- I don't think you know how this works. I am NOT claiming anything beyond what is confirmed. I do not claim the problem is "tiny". I claim nothing at all. YOU claim beyond 1%... with no evidence, just speculation and your personal/subjective feelings.
      Joeviocoe
      • 2 Years Ago
      Yes, but EV buyers understand and agreed to the degradation of the battery before purchase. It is the trade off with the maintenance needs of an IC engine. If you don't spend money at regular intervals on the maintenance of an ICE... it will go from 100% working, to 0% instantly. An EV battery doesn't really require maintenance, but will degrade gradually. It is really a fundamental difference.
      Rotation
      • 2 Years Ago
      If my ICE lost 30% range in 3 years (4 is outside its warranty period, IIRC) it would be considered significant to warrant a full repair, not a repair to 70%. And also note that lost of range in ICE is less important as they start with longer ranges and fills are easier. You're talking about a car that only gets about 75-80 miles on day 1. You're saying 50 miles 4 years later seems sufficient. I don't agree. And while I do agree that people would be tempted to degrade their packs to get down to trigger the warranty, perhaps the real solution to this is to make a pack that is difficult to get down to 70% after 5 years? This is is the modus operandi with ICEs and people will expect something rather close to it for EVs.
      Spec
      • 2 Years Ago
      "bars"? What kind of scientific measurement is that? Can't they just change their software to display the current maximum charge to display 12 "bars" with that kind of language?
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