WhyNotEV
Posts: 12
Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2017 12:06 pm
Delivery Date: 22 Aug 2017

Rationalizing the purchase of a used Leaf

Thu Aug 24, 2017 1:01 am

Shopping for a 2014-2015 Leaf with 12 bars and under 30K miles.
Supposing I end up buying it, what's going to happen after 3-5 years when the battery life comes to an end? Is this a throwaway purchase? There will be no resale or trade-in value left if the battery is dying. The only outcome I see is to turn a used up Leaf into a project car for various experiments like solar panels on the roof for constant recharging.
Of course I could hope for a lower priced (and possibly higher kWh) replacement battery. Other than that it seems like a completely self-indulgent purchase: environmental issues aside this car will not pay for itself in the price of unused gasoline before the battery dies as I don't do a lot of driving. Also, I tend to hold on to my cars and my 10-yo Accord is doing just fine and will probably do just fine for another 10 years.

Why a Leaf purchase is even on the table? I like the quiet ride, not having to buy gas, and it's fun to drive. Oh, and I've been dreaming about owning an EV for 8+ years now. And tomorrow may never come (that's a retort to self trying to wait for longer-range, better battery chemistry model). So, expensive (in our neck of the woods) toy, alas.

Sorry about the rant.


How did you rationalize your purchase?

LeftieBiker
Posts: 7332
Joined: Wed May 22, 2013 3:17 am
Delivery Date: 31 May 2013
Location: Upstate New York, US

Re: Rationalizing the purchase of a used Leaf

Thu Aug 24, 2017 2:48 am

Unless you live in the Mohave Desert, a 12 bar leaf won't be useless in 3-5 years. That would be closer to 10 years out.
2013 "Brilliant Silver" SV with Premium Package and no QC, and 2009 Vectrix VX-1 with 18 Leaf cells.

The most offensive, tasteless phrase in use here is "Pulled the trigger." I no longer respond to posts that use it.

SageBrush
Posts: 1481
Joined: Sun Mar 06, 2011 2:28 am
Delivery Date: 13 Feb 2017
Location: Colorado

Re: Rationalizing the purchase of a used Leaf

Thu Aug 24, 2017 6:33 am

I bought the car for my wife's about town use. It really never has to go more than 30 miles between charges and I am starting at a range of 100 miles so I expect the car battery to last a long time in our climate and with our willingness/ability to keep it from baking in the sun. My sig has more details.
Last edited by SageBrush on Thu Aug 24, 2017 7:03 am, edited 2 times in total.
2013 Model 'S' with QC & rear-view camera
Bought off-lease Jan 2017 from N. California with 63.9 Ahr after 22k miles
Car is now enjoying an easy life in Colorado

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OrientExpress
Forum Supporter
Posts: 1064
Joined: Sun Aug 08, 2010 12:22 pm
Delivery Date: 10 May 2011
Leaf Number: 2331
Location: San Jose, Ca

Re: Rationalizing the purchase of a used Leaf

Thu Aug 24, 2017 6:58 am

You are on the right track by looking for a 2014 or later LEAF. These cars have a much better battery and are essentially trouble free.

We drive a 2014 car with over 45K miles on it, it still has all its bars, and went 80 miles on a charge when new, and still goes 80 miles on a charge today. The car has never had a warranty claim and is rock solid.
2014 LEAF SV
Ocean Blue
Delivery May 23 2014
46,000+ miles - all 12 bars - Same range as new - No warranty issues ever!

WhyNotEV
Posts: 12
Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2017 12:06 pm
Delivery Date: 22 Aug 2017

Re: Rationalizing the purchase of a used Leaf

Thu Aug 24, 2017 10:13 am

LeftieBiker wrote:Unless you live in the Mohave Desert, a 12 bar leaf won't be useless in 3-5 years. That would be closer to 10 years out.

I honestly hope it's not wishful thinking, and only time will tell how useful a 10-yo Leaf will be. On the other hand, if I want a used 2014 Leaf to serve me for 10 years - I won't know until 2027! Imagine, what kind of cars we'll have by then!!!
Perpetually self-charging solar electric ones? 800-mile fuels cell ones? Flying ones?? :lol:
Surely a tired old Leaf will look even more like a wind up toy against them! Regardless, it may be the only fairly affordable way to drive an EV for me today. ;)

hackdroot
Posts: 73
Joined: Sat Apr 15, 2017 12:54 pm
Delivery Date: 15 Apr 2017
Location: East Bay Area, CA

Re: Rationalizing the purchase of a used Leaf

Thu Aug 24, 2017 11:04 am

My 2013 leaf still has 12 bars and I commute with it daily 52+ miles a day. When the range degrades to the point that commuting is not practical, I will have a longer range EV, but the range on my current leaf will always serve a purpose for someone, if not myself. The range would have to get down to below 40 miles to make it too much of a hassle to keep around for short errands, and I imagine that will be quite a ways away.

I love driving my leaf and especially the fact that I won't be dealing with:

Gas stations (other than beer runs)
Smog checks
Water pumps
Timing belts
Head gaskets
Frequent brake jobs
Transmission issues
EGR nonsense
Oil/Transmission fluid changes
Rear/front main seal leaks.
etc.....

You mention the money saved on gas, how about the savings on those costs and potential issues?

I paid $10k for my car (SL version fully loaded) and I have residential solar which generates enough to cover the charging of my leaf.

I do have an ICE vehicle for longer trips, but to be honest, my leaf covers 95% of my driving needs and works for me. I'm a convert and find that those who are skeptical/hating on EV's usually never owned one or driven one.
2013 Leaf SL (12/2013) + Premium package 31,000 miles - 58.8AHr - 89%SOH

WhyNotEV
Posts: 12
Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2017 12:06 pm
Delivery Date: 22 Aug 2017

Re: Rationalizing the purchase of a used Leaf

Thu Aug 24, 2017 11:25 am

hackdroot wrote:
You mention the money saved on gas, how about the savings on those costs and potential issues?



I guess I've been very lucky with my Accord that to date had not needed any major repairs (knock on wood), but even so, last night the "Change oil" light went on and I know that'll be $60 out of my pocket - the money I could potentially apply to an EV purchase. :mrgreen: Heck I could have saved the $300 recently spent on brake/power steering flush. BTW, does Leaf have power steering fluid at all?
I may be asking too much hoping to recover at least part of the cost of an EV via savings on gas, it had never been the case with ICE, in fact ICE buyers are expected to spend much money to fuel up! Slowly nudging self towards a final decision.

SageBrush
Posts: 1481
Joined: Sun Mar 06, 2011 2:28 am
Delivery Date: 13 Feb 2017
Location: Colorado

Re: Rationalizing the purchase of a used Leaf

Thu Aug 24, 2017 12:00 pm

This is the money calc I did for my purchase of a used LEAF earlier this year:

Cost $8,300
Shipping: $700
State credit (those were the days!) - $2000
Car insurance: $15 a month
Fuel: too low to calculate, runs off my DIY PV

I'm pretty confident that the car will last five years, and if we are lucky, 10 years.

For five years I'll pay $7,000 + $900 = $7,900 or $125 a month
If it lasts seven years I'll pay $7,000+ $1260 = $8260 or $93 a month
If it lasts 10 years I'll pay $7,000+$1,800 = $8800 or $73 a month

In short, a nice, clean, EV for somewhere between less and way less than a dirty ICE vehicle.
Rationalizing was not needed; this was a no-brainer.

Our second, more versatile EV will be a Model 3. That took some rationalizing.
Last edited by SageBrush on Thu Aug 24, 2017 7:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.
2013 Model 'S' with QC & rear-view camera
Bought off-lease Jan 2017 from N. California with 63.9 Ahr after 22k miles
Car is now enjoying an easy life in Colorado

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DuncanCunningham
Forum Supporter
Posts: 458
Joined: Thu Mar 26, 2015 10:02 am
Delivery Date: 15 Apr 2015
Location: Bountiful, UT

Re: Rationalizing the purchase of a used Leaf

Thu Aug 24, 2017 12:38 pm

SageBrush wrote:Car insurance: $15 a month


I thought I was doing well on $47 per month. How did you do that? Are you combining it with another policy? if so, then it makes sense that it wouldn't be much more per month.
Statler: Wake up you old fool. You slept through the show.
Waldorf: Who's a fool? You watched it.

2015 Leaf S (leased until May 2018, Bought out in Jan 2017)
2012 Leaf SL (purchased May 2015)

hackdroot
Posts: 73
Joined: Sat Apr 15, 2017 12:54 pm
Delivery Date: 15 Apr 2017
Location: East Bay Area, CA

Re: Rationalizing the purchase of a used Leaf

Thu Aug 24, 2017 12:42 pm

WhyNotEV wrote:


I guess I've been very lucky with my Accord that to date had not needed any major repairs (knock on wood), but even so, last night the "Change oil" light went on and I know that'll be $60 out of my pocket - the money I could potentially apply to an EV purchase. :mrgreen: Heck I could have saved the $300 recently spent on brake/power steering flush. BTW, does Leaf have power steering fluid at all?
I may be asking too much hoping to recover at least part of the cost of an EV via savings on gas, it had never been the case with ICE, in fact ICE buyers are expected to spend much money to fuel up! Slowly nudging self towards a final decision.


The leaf has electric power steering.

If you have a good reliable used ICE car that you own, then no, you're not saving any money buying another car at this point.

I replaced a commute vehicle that was having issues with oil leaks and a failing transmission, so I did not need to rationalize for long.
2013 Leaf SL (12/2013) + Premium package 31,000 miles - 58.8AHr - 89%SOH

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